Large rainforest tree to 40 m tall, tapering from a stout trunk. Bark flaking in plates to produce an attractive mottling. Leaves dark, glossy green above, paler below, 5-12 cm long, 2-5 cm wide, the margins thickened and recurved, tapering into a flattened stalk. Male cones about 8 cm long, axillary, cylindrical, borne in the higher branches. Female cones 10-13 cm long, 8-10 cm wide, roundish, maturing and splitting up Mar.-Apr. to release the hard, flat bracts and seeds c. 8 mm long with an irregular wing on one side.
Qld. This species grows naturally in four localised areas: New Guinea to the east of Port Moresby, central New Britain, rainforests of N Queensland, and in SE Queensland on Fraser Island and the adjacent mainland.
Agathis robusta subsp. nesophila Whitmore is restricted in natural distribution to Eastern New Guinea and is not cultivated.
The timber was once used for furniture but is now in short supply.
SA: Torrens Park (19 Inverloch Ave, possibly planted in Robert Barr-Smith's Torrens Park Estate in the 1870's). NSW: Albury (Bot. Gds 40.5 m tall in 1991, planted 1910); Sydney (Centennial Park Depot; Inverell, Sherwood Park manor, 29 m in 1981, ptd 1904; Rozelle, Rozelle Hospital S of chapel, c. 30 m tall in 1992; Woollahra, Council Chambers 25 m, 2 trees 100 years old). VIC: Balwyn (Maranoa Gds); Burnley (V.C.A.H., c. 22 m in 1989, planted c. 1863); Caulfield (Park); Geelong (Bot. Gds); Heidelberg Park; Kew (Boroondara Cemetery); Melbourne (Royal Bot. Gds, Australian Border adjacent to the Oak Lawn, near 'A' Gate); St Kilda (Blessington Gardens). TAS: Hobart (Royal Tasmanian Bot. Gds; Queens Domain); Launceston (Cataract Gorge).
Source: (1995). Araucariaceae. In: . Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 1, Ferns, conifers & their allies. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press. (as Agathis robusta subsp. robusta)