Cypress, White | Callitris glaucophylla

White cypress is a highly durable Australian softwood timber species. It is readily available throughout Australia.

Other Names: Australian Cypress, White Cypress Pine, Murray Pine, Western Cypress, Northern Cypress Pine, Callitris Glauca, Callitris Columellaris, Callitris Hugelii

Overview

White cypress is a softwood timber species growing to a height of up to 25 metres and a stem diameter of 0.6 metres. It is commonly found throughout Victoria, western New South Wales and central western Queensland.

In contrast to a creamy-white band of sapwood, the heartwood of this species ranges in colour from light yellow through orange to light brown, with occasional dark brown streaks. Grain is generally straight with a very fine and even texture. The presence of numerous tight knots is a distinctive feature that produces a strikingly decorative figure on exposed faces.

Natural resins in the wood impart a distinctive odour to white cypress and are believed to contribute to the timber's impressive natural durability. Heartwood is resistant to termites. Life expectancy for above ground applications is greater than 40 years and up to 25 years in-ground. Both the sapwood and the heartwood of this species resist impregnation with commercially available preservatives.

In terms of hardness, white cypress is a firm timber (rated 4 on a 6-class scale in relation to both indentation and hand tooling). It can be satisfactorily machined and turned to a smooth finish. Pre-drilling is recommended for hand nailing seasoned timber, although machine nailing with shear-point nails works well. White cypress readily accepts most standard coatings, stains and polishes. Special techniques, such as surface roughening, are required for gluing. 

In its area of natural occurrence, white cypress is commonly found as sawn timber (usually unseasoned) in framework and other aspects of general building construction. More widely, it is used as flooring, cladding and fencing material. Decorative uses of white cypress include quality indoor and outdoor furniture, turnery, joinery, carving, parquetry and linings. Other common applications include oyster stakes and jetty piles in low-salinity environments, as well as beehives.

Properties

Shrinkage

Very Low Low Medium High Very High
Tangential:          
0.0
Radial: 0 - 2

Strength Group

Very High High Reasonably High Medium High Medium Reasonably Low Low Very Low
Unseasoned:S1S2S3S4S5S6S7
Seasoned:SD1SD2SD3SD4SD5SD6SD7SD8

Stress Grade

Structural
No. 1
Structural
No. 2
Structural
No. 3
Structural
No. 4
Structural
No. 5
Unseasoned: F11 F8 F7 F5 F4
Seasoned: F17 F14 F11 F8 F7

Density per Standard

Unseasoned: 770 kg/m3
Seasoned: 700 kg/m3

Joint Group

Very High High Reasonably High Medium Low Very Low
Unseasoned:J1J2J3J4J5J6
Seasoned:JD1JD2JD3JD4JD5JD6

Colour

  White, yellow, pale straw to light brown Pink to pink brown Light to dark red Brown, chocolate, mottled or streaky
   

Mechanical Properties

Modulus of Rupture - Unseasoned: 71
Modulus of Rupture - Seasoned: 79
Modulus of Elasticity - Unseasoned: 7.7
Modulus of Elasticity - Seasoned: 9.0
Maximum Crushing Strength - Unseasoned: 40
Maximum Crushing Strength - Seasoned: 53
Impact - Unseasoned: 7.8
Impact - Seasoned: 4.6
Toughness - Unseasoned: Low - up to 15 Nm
Toughness - Seasoned: Low - up to 15 Nm
Hardness - Unseasoned: 5.6
Hardness - Seasoned: 6.5

Durability

Low Moderate Reasonably High High
(0 - 5 yrs) (5 - 15 yrs) (15 - 25 yrs) (more than 25 yrs)
In-Ground:
(0 - 7 yrs) (7 - 15 yrs) (15 - 40 yrs) (More than 40 yrs)
Above ground:
(0 - 20 yrs, usually < 5) (21 - 40 yrs) (41 - 64 yrs) (More than 60 yrs)
Marine Borer Resistance:
Lyctid Borer Susceptibility: Not Susceptible
Lyctid Borer Susceptibility - Other: Like all softwoods, White Cypress is not susceptible to Lyctid Borer.
Termite Resistance: Resistant

Fire Properties

0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
EFH Ignitibility:
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
EFH Spread-of-Flame Index:
EFH Smoke-Developed Index:
Critical Radiance Flux - Lower: >2.2 and <4.5 kW/m2
Critical Radiance Flux - Higher: ≥4.5 kW/m2
Smoke Development Rate: <750
1 - non-combustible 2 - reasonably non-combustible 3 - slightly combustible 4 - combustible
Fire Properties Group
Number:
Average Specific Extinction Area: <250
Bushfire Resistance: BAL 12.5 and 19 – Door and window joinery only

Description

Botanical Name: Callitris glaucophylla
Preferred Common Name: Cypress, White
Other Names: Australian Cypress, White Cypress Pine, Murray Pine, Western Cypress, Northern Cypress Pine, Callitris Glauca, Callitris Columellaris, Callitris Hugelii
Species Type: Softwood

Appearance

In contrast to a creamy-white band of sapwood, the heartwood of this species ranges in colour from light yellow through orange to light brown, with occasional dark brown streaks. Grain is generally straight with a very fine and even texture. The presence of numerous tight knots is a distinctive feature that produces a strikingly decorative figure on exposed faces.

Common Applications

In its area of natural occurrence, white cypress is commonly found as sawn timber (usually unseasoned) in framework and other aspects of general building construction. More widely, it is used as flooring, cladding and fencing material. Decorative uses of white cypress include quality indoor and outdoor furniture, turnery, joinery, carving, parquetry and linings. Other common applications include oyster stakes and jetty piles in low-salinity environments, as well as beehives.

Common Form

Sawn

Workability

In terms of hardness, white cypress is a firm timber (rated 4 on a 6-class scale in relation to both indentation and hand tooling). It can be satisfactorily machined and turned to a smooth finish. Pre-drilling is recommended for hand nailing seasoned timber, although machine nailing with shear-point nails works well. White Cypress readily accepts most standard coatings, stains and polishes. Special techniques, such as surface roughening, are required for gluing. 

Origin of Timber

QLD, WA, NT

Availability - Further Information

Sawn timber products from white cypress are readily available in the eastern states of Australia and its areas of origin.

Source of Timber

Native Forest

Applications

  • Decking

    Timber decking creates spaces that are functional, practical and aesthetically pleasing. With the right design and care a timber deck will make a valuable addition to any home or business, creating an outdoor living space that will be enjoyed for years to come.

  • External Cladding

    The natural appeal, versatility and strength of timber makes it the superior choice for external cladding. Through specification, planning, design and finishing processes, timber cladding not only creates a building of superior strength, acoustic and thermal performance but also creates a place of beauty, style and natural appeal.

  • Fencing

    When it comes to fencing, timber is your natural choice. A material that is durable, strong and reliable it compliments almost every outdoor landscape and environment. Clear specification, detailed installation and appropriate maintenance will see any timber fence provide a natural and lasting property boundary and back drop for years to come.

  • Flooring

    Whether for structural or finished flooring applications, timber offers durability, versatility and adaptability. The warmth, strength and natural beauty of timber flooring has proved enduringly popular in a wide variety of interior settings.

  • Framing

    Since people began building simple shelters, wooden framing has played an important role in shaping structures of many kinds. One of the most popular types of wooden framing is known as lightweight timber construction.

  • Retaining Walls (Landscaping)

    When it comes to retaining wall, landscape design and construction, timber is the natural choice. A material that is durable, sturdy and reliable, it boasts natural aesthetics that help it blend seamlessly with the outdoors. Careful consideration during the specification and design process will facilitate the creation of a long lasting, durable and eye catching timber retaining wall that will complement its surrounding landscape for years to come.

  • Timber Joinery Products

    Timber joinery products offer a classic, unique and stylish touch to any interior design.

  • Timber Portal Frames

    For buildings that require large spans and column free interiors, timber portal frames provide one of the most aesthetically pleasing solutions. Utilising modern engineering technology, portal frame design transforms timber into a highly effective, efficient and economical structural product. This application guide provides a comprehensive overview of the process of using timber in the specification, fabrication and erection of portal frame structures.

Case Studies

  • Narrabeen House

    Narrabeen House – an innovative use of timber and timber products creates a private paradise in the suburbs.

    Applications: Doors, External Cladding, Fencing, Framing, Interior Stairs, Internal Paneling, Structural Timber Poles, Windows,

  • Peninsula Hot Springs

    At the Peninsula Hot Springs Gregory Burgess Architects use timber to create environments that enhance the spirit.

    Applications: Decking, External Cladding, Flooring, Framing, Interior Stairs, Structural Timber Poles,

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