Hayman EucalyptusNovember 9, 2011
Hayman’s new bushwalking trails are home to a very special species of Eucalyptus tree.
“It’s a hybrid of two different types of Eucalyptus tree,” Landscaping Manager Doug Van Wyk Smith explains.
The Poplar Eucalyptus and Forest Red Gum cross-pollinated to create an entirely different species.
“Cross pollination is uncommon among trees, but it’s particularly uncommon with Eucalyptus trees,” says Doug, “it’s a million to one really”.
“Cross pollinating is just like breeding; the offspring takes on characteristics from both ancestors.”
The biggest difference in the tree is in the leaves. The leaves on the Poplar Eucalypt are long and thin while the Red Gum leaves are shorter and quite round. The result in this case is a long, round leaf that looks completely different to the others.
There’s still a lot to be discovered about these trees, but there are early indications that it’s far more resistant to high winds than the Poplar or Red Gum.
“Who knows, we might have some kind of ‘super tree’ on our hands”, says Doug with a smile.
Hayman has the largest population of these trees anywhere in the world, but what are they called?
“At the moment the tree is referred to as ‘Hybrid Eucalyptus Platyphylla (Poplar) and Eucalyptus Tereticornis (Forest Red Gum)’, but I think ‘Hayman Eucalyptus’ is a bit catchier. Don’t you?”
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