Northern Beaches Environment

Standfast Tree Services and the Local Northern Beaches Environment

Through the implementation of its Environmental Policy Standfast Tree Services is committed to sustainable arboricultural practices that help to protect the local environment.

Work is carried out with consideration for the environment by recycling material waste and limiting air and noise pollution to minimum levels.



Staff are inducted into Standfast Tree Services’ Environmental Policy and are encouraged in their training program to reach Certificate 3 Arboriculture at TAFE NSW.

Our Level 5 arborists consider all of the potential impacts on the environment including habitat resources when assessing trees, particularly those that may need to be removed.


Work practices

The woodchippers turn vegetation into beneficial mulch which is just great for conditioning soil, saving water and promoting plant growth in individual gardens and all open spaces.

Any weedy vegetation that is not suitable to be used as mulch is stockpiled.

It is ground up and then left to transform into organic compost – a process which destroys any surviving weeds, seeds and plant pathogens.

Mechanisms for environmental protection are incorporated into Standfast Tree Service’s work practice:

  • Operating Procedures for Quality Assurance
  • Preliminary Hazard/Risk Assessments
  • On Site Hazard/Risk Assessments

These key procedures identify any potential environmental impacts arising from the intended work and define the particular safe work practices that are required to reduce/eliminate the impact.

Any risks to fauna especially those species that are endemic to the Northern Beaches area are also identified and appropriate protection measures are put in place.

All tree work adheres to:

  • LGA regulations contained in Development Control Plans (DCPs) and Local Environmental Plans (LEPs)
  • AS 4373-2007, Pruning of amenity trees
  • WorkCover Code of Practice for the Amenity Tree Industry 1998
  • Work Health and Safety Act 2011
  • All vehicles, machinery and equipment are maintained so that they work efficiently and minimize impacts on the environment.

The local Northern Beaches environment

There are a number distinctive communities of native vegetation established along the Northern Beaches of Sydney.

These include the Pittwater Spotted Gum Forest and the Bangalay Sand Forest.

There are others – sclerophyll forest and rainforest, and they combine to contribute to the beauty and atmosphere of the Northern Beaches.


Trees of the Pittwater Spotted Gum Forest

In 1998 the Pittwater Spotted Gum Forest (PSGF) located on the Northern Beaches was listed as an Endangered Ecological Community under the Threatened Species Conservation Act (1995).

Isolated from other spotted gum forests and with its own character the PSGF extends over the Barrenjoey Peninsula, from Mona Vale to Palm Beach and it is also found on the western foreshores of Pittwater and Scotland Island.

The PSGF comprises both:

  1. The Coastal Moist Spotted Gum Forest found in the northern areas of the Barrenjoey Peninsula such as Palmgrove Park, Avalon and the Crown of Newport Reserve, Newport.
  2. The Coastal Dry Spotted Gum Forest is widespread, occurring usually in small stands on Pittwater in locations such as Avalon, Clareville and Scotland Island.

Tree species within the community of the PSGF are:

Corymbia maculata

Spotted gum

Corymbia gummifera

Red bloodwood

Allocasuarina torulosa

Forest oak

Angophora costata

Sydney red gum

Angophora floribunda

Rough-barked apple

Banksia integrifolia

Coast banksia

Eucalyptus botryoides


Eucalyptus carnea

Broad leaved white mahogany

Eucalyptus punctata

Grey gum

Eucalyptus paniculata

Grey ironbark

Livistona australis

Cabbage tree palm

Pittosporum undulatum

Sweet pittosporum

Syncarpia glomulifera


Tristaniopsis laurina

Water gum

Eucalyptus robusta

Swamp mahogany

Glochidion ferdinandi

Cheese tree



The spotted gum – Corymbia maculata

The spotted gum is native to coastal NSW and Southeast Queensland and is an integral part of the local Northern Beaches treescape and the PSGF. The spotted gum is a member of the Myrtaceae family and is a tall tree that can grow to a height of 30m with a fairly dense crown that dominates the canopy of the PSGF. All species within this community are protected. It is identified by the characteristic mottled or spotted trunk. Spotted gums may be confused with the lemon scented gum Corymbia citriodora which has a similar appearance but usually with less-distinctive, whiter bark. Citriodoras can be distinguished by the lemon scent that is particularly strong when its leaves are crushed.

Looking towards Pittwater over Spotted gums and Cabbage tree palms. Newport Northern Beaches.Northern Beaches tree services

The distinctive smooth, mottled bark of the Corymbia maculata. Spotted gums have no ‘sock’ of rough bark at ground level.FRUIT-spotted-gumThe fruit – large woody urn-shaped capsules containing the seeds in 3-4 valves that are deeply enclosed within the capsule.FRUIT spotted gumCreamy white flowers that appear from May to September with many stamens that radiate from a central disc.

Flower spotted gum

The buds are covered by a pointed reddish-brown cap. flower-spotted-gum

Smooth barked apple or Sydney red gum – Angohpora costata

A rugged beauty with its spreading crown of gnarled and twisted branches and trunk that is often stained with red kino. The Sydney red gum is an easily recognised member of the Pittwater Spotted Gum Forest. The surface of the trunk is often dimpled and each year in spring old grey bark is shed to reveal a new coppery surface. It flowers prolifically and large individual flowers are carried in flat-topped clusters above the foliage. The Sydney red gum can often be seen growing in parks and streets on the Northern Beaches where there is a notable specimen growing in Angophora Reserve, Avalon.Angophora costata in Angophora Reserve, Avalon on the Northern Beaches, Sydney.ang-costa-barkThe smooth but dimpled bark of Angophora costata.Ang Costa barkThe large creamy white flowers of the Sydney red gum are abundant in early summer and grouped in flat topped clusters above the foliage. The flower buds of the Sydney red gum are ribbed.Costata-seed-caps-final-1024x747The distinctive ribbed fruit of the Sydney red gum.  

A. Costata seed caps final

Rough barked apple – Angophora floribunda

Angophora floribunda is another member of the Pittwater Spotted Gum Forest that can often be seen in the streets, parks and gardens of the Northern Beaches. It is a medium-sized tree with a spreading crown and often has twisted branches. It has fibrous bark and like the Sydney red gum (Angophora costata) it has ribbed fruit.Angophora floribundas near Memorial Hall, Pittwater Rd, Mona Vale, Northern Beaches, Sydney.angophora floribundasGrey or brown the bark of Angophora floribunda has a rough, fibrous texture that extends throughout the tree and canopy to the smaller branches.ang-costa-bark1The creamy white flowers of Angophora floribunda appear in spring and summer. Flowers rough barked appleThe small ribbed fruit of Angophora floribunda are smaller but similar to those of Angophora costata.Flowers-rough-barked-apple

Cabbage Tree Palm – Livistona australis

One of the iconic trees of the Barrenjoey Peninsula on the Northern Beaches, the cabbage tree palm is a member of the Pittwater Spotted Gum Forest (Coastal Moist Spotted Gum Forest). Impressive stands can be seen at Bilgola Beach andon the Wakehurst Parkway. A member of the Arecaceae family it is tall with a spherical or mop-headed crown of fan shaped fronds.Cabbage tree palms at Bilgola Beach on the Northern Beaches


Characteristic fissured surface to the trunk.Characteristic fissured surface to the trunkThe mop-headed or spherical crown of Livistona australis, Wakehurst Parkway, Northern Beaches.Mop HeadThe fan shaped fronds of Livistona australis. Mop-Head-tree


Cronin, L., 2013. Cronin’s Key Guide to Australian Trees.s.l.:Allen & Unwin.Holliday, I., 2013. A Field Guide to Australian Trees. Third ed. s.l.:Reed New Holland. Robinson, L., 2003. Field Guide to the Native Plants of Sydney 3rd Edition. Sydney: Kangaroo Press.

Northern Beaches tree services