Monday, March 22, 2010

'My' Tree Has Gone

Across the highway from us is Meroo National Park. It used to be Termeil State Forest and had been logged for many years previous to its change of status, so much in fact, there is little old growth forest left.
Timber is a major industry in our part of the world with the main wood harvested coming from the spotted gum or Eucalyptus maculata. Left to its own devices the tree can grow up to 50 metres in height and 1.4 metres in diameter. It is normally tall and straight and easily recognised by its smooth, dimpled bark which is shed in summer, producing a mottled cream and grey 'spotted' appearance.
The timber makes good tool handles because it is very strong and is able to take shock. It is also ideal for heavy construction work in housing, piles, power poles, shipbuilding, weatherboards and flooring.
On the road into Meroo Head opposite our road stood a very big example of this type of tree. I often admired it as a survivor because it was obviously old growth but had been spared the axe and chainsaw. This was due perhaps to to its very peculiar shape that made it pretty useless as timber.
But the other morning I saw it had come down over the road and had been cut up to allow traffic through. The dreaded borers had finally done it irrepairable damage.
I got out the tape measure and found it had a radius of around 1.1 meters. Averaging out the width of the growth rings and doing some mathematics I estimated it to have been around 250 + years old.

Sad to see it lying there in pieces now but the road to Meroo Head will suddenly have a pretty imposing gateway well into the future

1 comment:

Karen said...

Oh, I'm so sorry you lost your tree..... :o(