Friday, October 28, 2011

resurrection

Seen near the paper mill on the Derwent

This remnant of Eucalyptus Regnans weighs 30 tonnes.
  The Bluegum or Swamp Gum which also grows in Victoria, is the world's tallest flowering plant and the second tallest tree in the world. (The Coastal Redwood is the tallest, but some Tasmanians dispute this). Centurion, recently found near the Airwalk in Geeveston clocks in at 99.6 metres and 4.5 metres in diameter and is still alive.
The sign on this log says that when this tree was a sapling, Elizabeth I was still on the throne and Tasmania had not yet been 'discovered.'

I was pleased to see this small shoot. Nature fights back.
Unfortunately, unlike other native plants and especially most other eucalypts, they do not regenerate well after a fire. What fire does do is cause much seed to set, admit more light, and provide soil nutrients. This little shoot has probably grown from a seed dropped by a bird, but it was nice to see anyway.

While some of the known trees are now on a register of noble trees and may not be logged, many more are still being felled for woodchips to be used for mundane products as toilet paper and newsprint. The ones in Victoria go into Reflex copy paper. Wouldn't mind so much if they were occasionally used for something more lasting - items such as cradles, furniture and housing, from which many generations would benefit and which would provide much longer employment.


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