You don’t have to be a tree-hugging greenie to get a warm fuzzy feeling about Australian trees. And I don’t mean the warmth and fuzziness from insect bites and allergic reactions to our arboreal assets!
It’s just that we have a wondrous diversity of native trees, many of which can be identified by their leaves. Trees as disparate as the snow gums that grow in our south eastern mountain ranges and the banksias that thrive on poor, coastal soil; the buttressed tropical rainforest giants found in the far north and the stout, many-stemmed desert mallees. Many species date back hundreds of millions of years to when Australia was part of Gondwanaland, the southern of our planet’s two super-continents. And there’s a national register of Big Trees.
Eucalyptus regnans is the world’s tallest flowering plant. But with more than 700 varieties of eucalypts – they are commonly called “gum trees” – whose blossoms range from cream to blood red and bark comes in assorted textures and colours, Australia has countless candidates for hugs from bushwalkers.