Water Gum flowers
Tristania budsTristania 'Elegant'
Tristaniopsis laurina

Tristaniopsis laurina 'Elegant' is a slow growing stately tree from Southeastern Australia. It tolerates many soil conditions including sand, low water and wind. The glossy leaves are generally 4 inches long and lance shaped with reddish coloring on the new growth. There are profuse yellow blossoms April through June (photo left was taken in the fall though!). Flowers are fragrant and are followed by small seed pods.

Naturally growing as a multi trunk tree, it forms a dense evergreen canopy over time. Its mottled peeling bark is interesting — new bark is a pale gray underneath. This is a fairly tidy tree (not much litter) and needs only pruning when young to get desired shape. Very disease and pest resistant. The native habitat for this tree is in seasonal damp areas with good drainage. Probably looks best with some dry season water.


Maximum height
45 feet tall
35 wide

Life Span
100 + years

Criteria for Ranking

1 (low) - 5 (high)

Drought Tolerance after first year establishment 3*
Wind Tolerance 4*
Frost Tolerance to 28º 5
Surface Roots/Sidewalk Lifting 4*
Power Lines Proximity

5 (good choice)
Cost/Maintenance 4
Disease Resistance/Hardiness 5
*note asterisk denote species probably needs some dry season water. Not enough data on growth habit with total neglect here in Marina.
*note asterisk denote species will be shaped by a prevailing wind. Single trunk trained trees need more protection than shrub to grow straight.
*note asterisk denote species can be a very wide tree over time. A search for images online can show some impressively broad specimens growing in Australia!

Location A long row of young Water Gums are on Redwood Street off of Carmel by the Marina Vista school playing field.