Treasured Trees

Adelaide’s European settlers planted a large range of specimen and street trees in the city area from the mid nineteenth century. The Adelaide Botanic Garden, established in 1854, includes many fine examples of specimen trees brought from around the world. The Adelaide City Council commenced systematic street tree plantings from the 1870s. More than half of the roadways in the city have street tree plantings, numbering more than 6,000 trees and 60 different species.

A number of the individual trees and mass plantings in the city have endured for well over a century and continue to add beauty and amenity to the city, its parks and gardens. Adelaide’s dry, Mediterranean climate can be a test for many European trees, but some have successfully adapted to the conditions, such as the ‘London Plane’ tree, most notably in Frome Road’s famous avenue.

This trail features some of Adelaide’s most treasured trees - both Australian and introduced- and tells you something of their stories. The trail covers the city and North Adelaide and could take a whole day to complete on foot, so we suggest you tackle it in sections, perhaps treating the North Adelaide trees as a separate excursion.

The trees in this trail have been selected from the Significant Tree Register maintained by the National Trust of South Australia. The register has been compiled over thirty years by many volunteers. You can search the national register online at www.trusttrees.org.au.

Adelaide Botanic Garden: New Caledonia Pine

The genus Araucaria is a small one of very interesting trees including the Norfolk Island Pine, Hoop Pine and Bunya Pine from Australia, the Monkey Puzzle from Chile and New Caledonia Pine. The latter is endemic to New Caledonia and was noted by…

Adelaide Botanic Garden: Camphor Laurel

This Camphor Laurel Cinnamomum camphora is a very large multiple trunked specimen and is an outstanding tree in both size and appearance. It belongs to the Laurel family which includes the Bay Tree Laurus nobilis and is native to China , Japan ,…

Adelaide Botanic Garden: Sweet Bursaria

This tree is found in the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, near the Main Gate on North Terrace. It is known as Sweet Bursaria, Australian Blackthorn, Mock Orange, Native Box, or SA Christmas Bush. The botanical name is Bursaria spinosa (Syn. Cyrilla…

Adelaide Botanic Garden: Native Orange

This tree is found in the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, about 50m north of the North Terrace entrance. The Native Orange Capparis mitchellii is an Australian evergreen from the Capparaceae family. Capparis is from the Latin for caper, in recognition of…

Adelaide Botanic Garden: Australian Red Cedar

This tree was planted by George Francis, the first Director of the Adelaide Botanic Garden, and listed in the Garden’s 1859 plant catalogue, produced just five years after the garden was established. This tree is the largest known cultivated…

Adelaide Botanic Garden: Pepper Tree

This particular tree is in the Adelaide Botanic gardens, near the North Terrace entrance. It was planted in 1863, eight years after the founding of the gardens. In 2015 it is 152 years old, and expected to live for many more years. It was planted by…

Frome Road: London Plane Tree Avenue

The Frome Road avenue was planted in 1902 to commemorate Arbor Day and is one of the best known in Adelaide. It is a fine example of Plane trees being used for that purpose. The tall trees with their wide spreading canopies provide much appreciated…

Cresswell Gardens: War Memorial Oak

This magnificent English Oak Quercus robur known as the ‘War Memorial Oak’, is found off War Memorial Drive in the Creswell Gardens, near the Adelaide Oval. It was planted on 29 August, 1914; a mere 25 days after Britain declared war on Germany,…

St Marks College: Camphor Laurel

This tree, in the grounds of St Marks College, Pennington Terrace, North Adelaide, was planted in the 1860s. It is in good health and a representative of early Adelaide garden tree choices. Camphor Laurel (Cinnamomum camphora, Syn. Officinalis)…

Municipal Golf Course: Mallee Box

This particular tree, within the Municipal Golf Course, off Park Terrace and Jeffcott Road, about 50 metres from the road, may be the last remaining Mallee Box anywhere in the Adelaide Park Lands, apart from one in the West terrace Cemetery. Where…

Tynte Street, North Adelaide: Pepper Tree

This Pepper Tree is found in the courtyard of an historic courtyard, now part of the Pepper Tree Restaurant. It is 10m tall, with a trunk girth of 6.4m, and a canopy spread of 16m. Believed to be planted before 1881, it is a grand and beautiful tree…

Lincoln College: Norfolk Island Pine

This particular tree growing in the grounds of Lincoln College on Ward Street, North Adelaide is a very fine specimen, and a landmark in this locality. It is more than 25 metres tall and is believed to have been planted in 1888, making it almost 130…

Regent Street South: Hybrid Kurrajong

The Hybrid Kurrajong (Brachychiton acerifolius x Brachychiton populneus) meaning Poplar- like is a natural hybrid and was first recognised at the end of the nineteenth century and noted by eminent botanist Baron von Mueller . The tree is an…

Victoria Park Racecourse: Dragon’s Blood Tree

This unusual tree can be found within the North-East corner of the former Victoria Park Racecourse fence near the Britannia Roundabout, approx 20 metres south-west of the outer Racecourse fence. Although not the oldest in South Australia, this is one…

East Park Lands: Sugar Gum stand

This stand of sugar gum trees growing in Adelaide’s East Park Lands between Beaumont Road, and Fullarton Road has a long history. It is a remnant from Australia’s first Arbor Day celebrations of 20 June 1889, making it more than 125 years old.…