The name of the bottle tree can be taken literally, as it looks like a bottle, and contains a significant amount of sap stored between the inner bark and the trunk. It is a characteristic sight of the dry inland savannah of Queensland, where the roots, shoots, and wood provided food for aborigines.
In Queensland the trees can expand to as much as 1.5 meters in diameter well above eye level. The height of the tree is less impressive, with a maximum height of 18-20 meters, and the canopy spans 5-12 meters in diameter. The tree will drop its leaves before the flowering period, which are between the months of October and December. Its distinctive bottle shaped trunk becomes more pronounced as it ages to 15 years
The species can be cultivated either by seed or transplantation. Transplantation requires minimal soil preparation. The trees, even decades old, can tolerate robust transplantation, and survive a period of three months between removal and plantation in its new location. This ability allows it great opportunity to be shipped from its Queensland home to different parts of the world.