[permaculture] Perennial Ground Covers for Hawaii...etc.

permed at nor.com.au permed at nor.com.au
Tue Mar 12 04:24:29 EST 2002

>Took me quite a while to dig out that what's called "ironwood" in
>Hawai'i is casuarina of some sort, not sure which one though - may be
>several types there.  As you've probably noticed elsewhere on the
>island, it was introduced for windbreak primarily, I think.  
>Some varieties fix nitrogen. 

Casuarinas have a range of associate mycorrhizal fungi which increase 
several hundred fold the amount of phosphorus available to the host tree, 
plus traces of zinc and other trace elements. Not particularly known for 
Nitrogen accumulation (Casuarinas don't have a rhyzobium associate).
Work has been done on mycorrhizal innoculation of Cas seedlings by NSW 
Forestry Dept and Uni of NSW back in the 1980's - don't have any URLs or 
further leads at hand.
By the way (when I read the above research in the '80's) it stated there 
are several mycorrhizal associates of Casuarinas that produce good edible 
If there's anyone (esp. in Oz) who knows how to track this down please 
let me know - I'd love to have more wild myco-culture in my woodlot.

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