The genus Agathis, commonly known as kauri or dammar, is a relatively small genus of 21 species of evergreen tree. The genus is part of the ancient Araucariaceae family of conifers, a group once widespread during the Jurassic period, but now largely restricted to the Southern Hemisphere except for a number of extant Malesian Agathis. Mature trees have characteristically large trunks, forming a bole with little or no branching below the crown. In contrast, young trees are normally conical in shape, forming a more rounded or irregularly shaped shaped crown as they achieve maturity.
The bark is smooth and light grey to grey-brown, usually peeling into irregular flakes that become thicker on more mature trees. The branch structure is often horizontal or, when larger, ascending. The lowest branches often leave circular branch scars when they detach from the lower trunk.
The juvenile leaves in all species are larger than the adult, more or less acute, varying among the species from ovate to lanceolate. Adult leaves are opposite, elliptical to linear, very leathery and quite thick. Young leaves are often a coppery-red, contrasting markedly with the usually green or glaucous-green foliage of the previous season.
The male pollen cones appear usually only on larger trees after seed cones have appeared. The female seed cones usually develop on short lateral branchlets, maturing after two years. They are normally oval or globe shaped.
The timber is straight-grained and of fine quality. The wood is commonly used in the manufacture of low priced guitars due to its good resonating properties, yet relatively low price of production. It is also used for some Go boards (goban).
Kauri is one of the finest boat building timbers available. Its exceptional strength to weight ratio and rot reistance makes it an ideal timber for yacht construction.
"Triple plank Kauri" is a yacht construction method unique to New Zealand and produces yacht hulls of exceptional strength and durability.
- Agathis atropurpurea - Black Kauri, Blue Kauri (Queensland, Australia)
- Agathis australis - Kauri, New Zealand Kauri (North Island, New Zealand)
- Agathis borneensis - (western Malesia, Borneo)
- Agathis corbassonii - Red Kauri (New Caledonia)
- Agathis dammara (syn. A. celebica) - Bindang (eastern Malesia)
- Agathis endertii - (Borneo)
- Agathis flavescens - (Borneo)
- Agathis kinabaluensis - (Borneo)
- Agathis labillardieri - (New Guinea)
- Agathis lanceolata - (New Caledonia)
- Agathis lenticula - (Borneo)
- Agathis macrophylla (syn. A. vitiensis) - Pacific Kauri, Dakua (Fiji, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands)
- Agathis microstachya - Bull Kauri (Queensland, Australia)
- Agathis montana - (New Caledonia)
- Agathis moorei - White Kauri (New Caledonia)
- Agathis orbicula - (Borneo)
- Agathis ovata - (New Caledonia)
- Agathis philippinensis - (Philippines, Sulawesi)
- Agathis robusta - Queensland Kauri (Queensland, Australia; New Guinea)
- Agathis silbae - (Vanuatu)
- Agathis spathulata - New Guinea Kauri (Papua New Guinea)