Camphorwood, Cinnamomum oliveri

Cinnamomum oliveri is a tree species commonly growing in rainforest habitats. The species can be found along the areas of Australia’s eastern coast, specifically from coastal New South Wales to the northern tip, Cape York Peninsula and down south in the rainforest behind Seven Mile Beach. It prefers warm, temperate areas and grows best in sedimentary soils.

C. oliveri belongs to the Lauraceae family and the plant is often commonly referred to as the Camphorwood, Oliver’s Sassafras, Black Sassafras, and Cinnamonwood. The tree typically grows up to 98 feet tall and will often measure around 30 inches in diameter.  Its bark may be brown or grey in color and may have a rough layered texture. C. oliveri leaves are often simple and smooth with a glossy green upper side and a blue/grey underside. The tree blooms ivory, aromatic flowers between October and November. Following flowering, fruit also known as drupes, are developed growing about .5 inches long.

C. oliveri may be used for its different properties. The tree’s bark is used and extracted for its essential oil. Its wood is used in construction for cabinetry and indoor work. The plant’s bark is rich in camphor, safrole and cinnamic aldehyde and depending on its chemical variety it is used for treating different medical conditions.

Image Caption: Leaves of a Camphorwood (Cinnamomum oliveri). Credit: Poyt448 Peter Woodard/Wikipedia (public domain)