Plantation forestry is the second largest production land use in the Northern Territory (NT) after beef grazing, with more than 47,000 hectare of the NT currently growing forest products.

There are 3 plantation operations in the NT where companies grow African mahogany, black wattle or sandalwood.

African mahogany, Khaya senegalensis, is being grown in the Douglas Daly region to produce high-value sawn timber used for flooring, fine furniture or veneers. The 14,000 ha, unirrigated plantation is the largest African mahogany plantation in the world, with a predicted rotation of 17 to 22 years.

Black wattle, Acacia mangium, is being grown on the Tiwi islands for woodchip to produce pulp. The approximately 30,000 ha of forest is expected to produce 200,000 and 400,000 green metric tonnes of wood chip for export each year.

Sandalwood, Santalum album, is grown in irrigated, mixed-species plantations to produce sandalwood oil for pharmaceutical and ceremonial markets worldwide. The more than 4,000 ha of plantations in the NT, centred around Katherine, are part of the largest area of sandalwood plantations in the world.

Grower advice

Listed below are links to growing advice for forestry enterprises in the NT.

African mahogany

Read the growing African mahogany in Northern Australia agnote PDF (278.9 KB).

Read the African mahogany grown in Australia, wood quality and potential uses report PDF (680.2 KB).


Read the growing teak in the Top End agnote PDF (42.0 KB).

Insect pests and disease management

To identify an insect pest and the damage it can cause, go to the Northern Territory Insects database.

For Teak Leaf Rust, read the agnote PDF (59.1 KB).

Sustainable forestry and accreditation

For information about sustainable forestry, and forest certification schemes, go to the Australian Government's Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment website.

Industry associations

For information about the forestry industry, go to the websites of Australian Forest Growers, the Greenlife Industry Australia or NT Farmers.

Last updated: 20 May 2022

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