Thursday, January 26, 2017

Eucalyptus deglupta

Rainbow eucalyptus, painted eucalyptus.

You can buy the live plants or seeds very reasonably, on eBay even less than through Amazon. The trees can withstand light frost but not hard freezing. The demand for the trees is high. They do not produce the same aromatic oils that other eucalyptus do. They can be planted as bonsai. They'e outrageous. And that's why you should buy some. 

Caution: invites rainbow koalas and they're proper bastards to evict. 


Eric the Fruit Bat said...

This weekend past I used a pen knife to nick 200 geranium seeds before soaking them overnight. It was kind of a pain in the ass. I shot two of them out into space, never to return to Earth. I would have found that humorous, had I been in a better mood. But I wasn't.

Sixty Grit said...

Those are very good looking trees. Sadly, sometimes the frost here is so heavy we have to shovel it.

Amartel said...

They smell lovely but they grow like weeds and drop a lot of messy stringy bark everywhere. Also highly volatile. We have a lot of them in the SF Bay Area.

ricpic said...

Are the green and orange stripes bark? Or is that what shows where the bark has peeled off?

Sixty Grit said...

The ones planted in the Bay Area are not that variety. In fact, they were planted in error - it was a get rich quick scheme that came to grief due to there are 700 varieties of eucalyptus trees.

Sixty Grit said...

^due to the fact that there are^

Amartel said...

Interesting! Did not know that it was a scheme as opposed to that they just happened to grow there (not naturally but it was a big port for a while and maybe somebody brought them over).

Amartel said...

From Ickypedia:

In the 1850s, Eucalyptus trees were introduced to California by Australians during the California Gold Rush. Much of California has a similar climate to parts of Australia. By the early 1900s, thousands of acres of eucalypts were planted with the encouragement of the state government. It was hoped that they would provide a renewable source of timber for construction, furniture making and railroad ties. It was soon found that for the latter purpose eucalyptus was particularly unsuitable, as the ties made from eucalyptus had a tendency to twist while drying, and the dried ties were so tough that it was nearly impossible to hammer rail spikes into them.

They went on to note that the promise of eucalyptus in California was based on the old virgin forests of Australia. This was a mistake as the young trees being harvested in California could not compare in quality to the centuries-old eucalyptus timber of Australia. It reacted differently to harvest. The older trees didn't split or warp as the infant California crop did. There was a vast difference between the two, and this would doom the California eucalyptus industry.

One way in which the eucalyptus, mainly the blue gum E. globulus, proved valuable in California was in providing windbreaks for highways, orange groves, and other farms in the mostly treeless central part of the state. They are also admired as shade and ornamental trees in many cities and gardens.

Eucalyptus plantations in California have been criticised because they compete with native plants and do not support native animals. Fire is also a problem. The 1991 Oakland Hills firestorm which destroyed almost 3,000 homes and killed 25 people was partly fuelled by large numbers of eucalypts close to the houses.

In some parts of California, eucalypt plantations are being removed and native trees and plants restored. Individuals have also illegally destroyed some trees and are suspected of introducing insect pests from Australia which attack the trees.

Sixty Grit said...

...and they chose the wrong variety. Some varieties are great for woodworking. Others, well, did you ever talk to anyone who tried to split E. globulus for firewood? They have a very interesting vocabulary on that subject.

Amartel said...

Goddam 1850s aussies gave us second-rate eupcalypts. Probably drunk at the time.
And, of course, the environazis are busy spending OPM removing them for noncredible reasons.

Sixty Grit said...

You are correct.

I always liked those trees - they used to line Skyline Blvd near Crystal Springs reservoir and they were very impressive - huge diameter, very tall, but not good for much else.

There was also a grove of them on the back of Stanford campus, back near Lake Lagunita, where Ken Kesey's old married student housing used to be.

And up near the Campanile on Berkeley campus there was another nice grove of them, but people were warned not to sit under the trees as they were prone to shed limbs even on calm days, without making a sound. One minute you are here, next minute, the trees have taken their revenge.