Thursday, 15 February 2007

Campbell's croft park 2

Campbell's croft park has a mix of trees species, deciduous and evergreen, such as these oaks and gums. This is another example of what I like about many Melbourne parks, Canterbury Park (posting on 17th January '07) is another. They are a mix, a sort of bricoleur brew of tidy and ragged, tall and broad, deep green and barely green, old and new, all showing how adaptable we are in making our public spaces.
The bark of these gums is deciduous, and produces a very dense mat of mulch which restricts any competition around the base of the tree. It also acts as a fire retardant. The centre tree produces bark in short strips, the other two in flakes. I think the centre tree is e. cladocalyx, sugar gum, a South Australian tree very drought proof and adaptable.
The bark peels off in strips, on some other species it flakes off.

Eucalypts and associated species have very interesting bark. which changes colour through the year. I will endeavour to record some of the changes.
These gums are flowering quite heavily. The branches contain the fruit of last year, the forming fruits of this year and flowers. Ants, bees, nectar eating birds like parrots, honey eaters, and bell birds can be seen hanging about in flowering trees.
Behind the gums is a row of oaks. The shade is different there, standing under the canopy, and the sunlight beyond is softer, easier.
Oak shade brings out the anglophile in me. These trees seem to thrive in the harsh summer, cool winters we have. This collection of oaks don't seem to have thinned out their leaves to cope with water stress, like some in the centre of town.

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Weeping elm

A rare Weeping Elm, Ulmus glabra camperdownii, in Campbell's Croft park, lat. -37 50.7 long. 145 12.45E. The only self-contained, self possessed tree in the park. Other trees were pines, gums, other elm species, oaks. The tree broods over its patch of grass, which is greener than a lot of other in the park. This species is a cultivar, and cannot reproduce by seed. So this example is the same as all others.
Elm bark, taken in the deep shade the tree provides, so the park, visible through the leaves, is washed out in the photograph.
Several of the branches were severely twisted. This is a feature of the species, and reproduces the original cultivar. It is quite spacious under the canopy of the tree, the leaves form a close cover which would be quite effective at keeping out the rain.
Typical elm leaf shape, however they seem patterned to form a cover which gives the definiteness to the shape of the tree. Form more see here:

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mateship 2


Two species that get on well. South side of Boronia Road, Vermont, near the Moore Street entrance.

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Monday, 12 February 2007

lamb and pear tree

My third cousin and her husband (our great grandmothers were sisters) standing next to their gum tree in south Glamorganshire, Wales, in 1996.

It completely escapes me now how she came by the tree. It may have been sent as seeds from one of my aunts or cousins in Australia. The only reason I met them was, while lost in the coeds and coeys of Glam., and on a public phone in a supermarket trying to contact her, when a man who had lived for 15 years in Melbourne realised were Oz and sorted out the conflicts of accent which had got us lost. I am not sure of the species, but it does remind me of a similar tree in a glass house in a park in Stockholm, Sweden, where the other resident was a Australian cockatoo with an obsession with stones.

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mateship

Three trees in a front yard on the corner of Canterbury Road and Forest Street, Forest Hill.
The trees have grown up together, rather like siblings, the middle one giving up most of the branches on the trunk to allow the two outer trees some room. It has put some branches on the north side, but most are at the top, and it is the straightest of the three trees. I have yet to determine the species, hence the second photo. I have begun to gather similar pictures and will run a series of them collected under the heading Crowds.

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a view from another edge

This is my gps on the South Australian/Victorian border as defined by the Act establishing South Australia in 1834.
These trees are on the north side of the road at 141E. West, down the road a couple of miles, some signs and a change in the road surface for the better, mark the official border. Bad surveying, a few thirsty years, lousy lawyering, and chronic governmental failure... There is some doubt, apparently, as to whether the border runs out to sea due south, or at some point exits land at a right angle to the shoreline.

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a little ray of sunshine

Russell Porter writes: As I pine (the verb not the tree) in sub-arctic Chicago I fantasise about Australian trees - especially in the wild. I bore my uncomprehending yankee culture victims with eulogies to the scented air and cackling insects and carolling birds - the ubiquitous numinous sense of the sublime in the bush.
They think I'm some kind of wacko born-again greenie ranter. I try in vain to convince them that even atheist antipodean ratbags can be uplifted to the point of tears by the spirituality of place. And trees. So I take photographs on my annual pilgrimages back home and hold them as totems. Here are a few from my recent trip, camping and bushwalking in the marvellous original landscape around Jervis Bay NSW.
This is a scribbly gum, e. racemosa or e. haemastoma, the scribbling is formed by the larvae of the moth Ogmograptis scribula. (Added to these spendid pictures-kb)

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Wednesday, 7 February 2007

the lucky country

The above was taken in May of the year 6, in Felgate Pde, Vermont South. Not that it really is a parade like street, curving as it does at the bottom of a hill. Some 2 months later:
It wasn't very green either, and it was winter. And I bet the bloke in the corner didn't have much to say about it either.

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Sunday, 4 February 2007

bush coconut


The View from Elsewhere - one of our favourite blogs - has kindly allowed us to cross post this account, which takes us to central Australia.

"Here are some photos I took of 'bush coconut' trees last night in the Desert Park area at the base of Mt Gillen. As you can see, everything is still very fresh and green after the recent rains.

The Bush Coconut, otherwise known as the 'bloodwood' or 'eucalyptus terminalis', has an unusual habit of spawning fruit-like growths. Those are the things you can see that look like animal droppings in its branches.



A grub acts as a kind of irritant, causing the tree to produce gall which coats the grub in a white flesh. The flesh hardens on the outside and you can break the coconut open to find the grub. The Aboriginal people in the area still use the bush coconut as a food source -- the grub contains a lot moisture -- and also as a disinfectant. (I read this in a school project, so it must be true.)


Mt Gillen framed by a bloodwood tree."

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