Plant Finder


Water Gum*

Tristaniopsis laurina

Add To My Wish List

print page
Water Gum (Tristaniopsis laurina) at Alsip Home and Nursery

Water Gum foliage

Water Gum foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Water Gum (Tristaniopsis laurina) at Alsip Home and Nursery

Water Gum bark

Water Gum bark

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

* This is a "special order" plant - contact store for details

Height:  40 feet

Spread:  20 feet

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade 

Hardiness Zone:  8

Other Names:  Kanooka


A slow growing sturdy tree with a widely spreading canopy; bright yellow flower clusters in summer have what some may consider an unpleasant odor; excellent for street planting and shade; leaves may turn red in colder weather

Ornamental Features

Water Gum features showy clusters of fragrant yellow flowers at the ends of the branches from late spring to early summer. It has green foliage with light green undersides. The glossy narrow leaves remain green throughout the winter. The fruit is not ornamentally significant. The smooth khaki (brownish-green) bark and brick red branches are extremely showy and add significant winter interest.

Landscape Attributes

Water Gum is an evergreen tree with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This is a relatively low maintenance tree, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. It is a good choice for attracting bees to your yard. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Water Gum is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Shade
  • Vertical Accent

Planting & Growing

Water Gum will grow to be about 40 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 20 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 3 feet from the ground, and should not be planted underneath power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 80 years or more.

This tree does best in full sun to partial shade. It prefers to grow in average to moist conditions, and shouldn't be allowed to dry out. It is not particular as to soil type, but has a definite preference for acidic soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This species is not originally from North America.


* This is a "special order" plant - contact store for details

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight Soil pH Preference
Accent  Shade  Articulation 
Flowers  Bark  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features