Wednesday, 19 May 2010

While we are on the subject...

Here's one I prepared earlier....

Here is an even younger me-1967-the car belongs to a friend of mine from what my children call 'the olden days'. The picture was taken in the south west of Western Australia near the town of Walpole. The tree is a Red Tingle (Eucalyptus jacksonii ). I have always thought it was a karri (E. diversicolor), but that was because when I was young I didn't pay much attention to the sort of detail necessary to describe a tree. I have not been back to see this tree in 40 years, so I am not sure whether you can park your car in it now, but I would imagine not. The world has moved on from that sort of vandalism. Jacksonii grows up to 60m and has a very large buttressed base of up to 16m. The tree is in the Walpole-Nornalup National Park, an area of Western Australia in the south west which has a high rainfall, up to 40 inches a year in parts.
Nowadays there are tree top walks in the area to keep people's dirty shoes out of the undercover in an attempt to stop the spread of phytophthoria cinnamomi, or dieback. See: http://www.dec.wa.gov.au/content/view/213/548/1/3/ for more info. Including maps and a discussion of management. E. Jacksonii doesn't appear to get effected by the disease, although Eucalyptus marginata – Jarrah- is susceptible. See here for a list of WA species susceptible to the disease: http://www.dieback.org.au/go/what-is-dieback/susceptible-species .
I visited this area twice, once as the tourist pictured and once while we were revising the national mapping for the area. The mapping exercise allowed less time to marvel at the sheer scale of the trees, but we got to see a lot more of them.