Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Beilschmiedia bancroftii (F.M.Bailey) C.T.White

Click/tap on images to enlarge
Flower. © Barry Jago
Fruit, side views, cross section and seed. © W. T. Cooper
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Habit, flower, stamens, staminode, fruit, seedling. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, hypogeal germination. © CSIRO
Tenth leaf stage. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO
Seedling. © CSIRO

White, C.T. (1918) Queensland Department of Agriculture and Stock. Botany Bulletin 20: 17.

Common name

Ash, Canary; Canary Ash; Walnut, Yellow; Yellow Walnut; Yellow Nut


Blaze odour conspicuous, strongly resembling that of sugar-cane (Saccharum officinale).


Twigs terete or angular, clothed in straight, white or pale brown, appressed hairs when young but glabrous when older. Leaf blades about 7-15 x 2-3 cm, green or slightly glaucous on the underside, clothed in straight, white or pale brown, appressed hairs when young but almost glabrous at maturity. Midrib raised on the upper surface. Petioles flat or channelled on the upper surface. Oil dots visible with a lens.


Tepals about 2.1-3.5 mm long. Stamens nine. Staminodes three, cylindrical or clavate. Ovary conspicuously stalked.


Fruits about 65-75 x 50-60 mm, not bilobed. Cotyledons cream. Endocarp about 2.0-2.5 mm thick usually with a sharp protuberance at each pole. The rat-eaten remains of the hard seed shells (endocarps) usually present under large trees.


At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade green on the underside; petiole hairy; oil dots small and only visible with a lens; new leaves hairy on both the upper and lower surfaces. Seed germination time 210 to 532 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to NEQ, restricted to the area between Bloomfield and Tully. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 1200 m. Grows in well developed rain forest on a variety of sites.

Natural History & Notes

The seeds of this species were utilised by aboriginals but only after treatment. They are toxic when fresh.

Produces millable logs and the sawn timber and veneer marketed as Yellow Walnut, a useful structural and decorative timber. Wood specific gravity 0.64-0.75. Hyland (1989).

Cryptocarya bancroftii F.M.Bailey, Queensland Department of Agriculture and Stock. Botany Bulletin 2: 16(1891), Type: Johnstone River, Dr. T.L. Bancroft; other scrubs of tropical Queensland, Bellenden-Ker Expedition. Beilschmiedia lachnostemonea F.Muell., The Victorian Naturalist 9: 11(1893), Type: Russells River; W. Sayer.
RFK Code
Copyright © CSIRO 2020, all rights reserved.