Even More Tree Talk.

Twenty three years ago the Bellbird Corner Riverside Reserve was established, and rejuvenation of this formerly grazed land began with a day of tree planting. Since then, planting, weed control, and other improvements have continued, and at the present day this small reserve is a biodiversity oasis amidst the surrounding farmland. To illustrate the success of the re-vegetation that has occurred, in early 2012 a planting of one hundred and sixty local tree species took place. The tube stock were planted in lines where the grass had been sprayed to reduce competition, and were well watered in and protected with plastic tree guards.

A few months later a large flood occurred, and the planting was inundated by a metre of water flowing over the area, but the guards held up well, no plants were lost, and the ground received a deep soaking leading to exceptional growth thereafter. The following image shows the planting after twelve years, click to enlarge.

Two of the tree species planted were Eucalyptus viminalis, and bridgesiana,  trees native to the local environment but greatly reduced in occurrence. They have done exceptionally well, after twelve years of growth more than one tree was measured at eighteen metres tall, while two viminalis from the early plantings are taller still at twenty seven metres. The value of the bird habitat these trees have created is evident, with White-throated Treecreepers now resident, Crested Shrike-tits have been recorded gleaning under-bark food items on several occasions, Eastern Yellow Robins are always present, treetop birds are plentiful in the canopy, and an outstanding record has been of a Bassian Thrush foraging in the litter.

More Tree Talk.

In recent times the Red Gums of Gippsland have been re-classified as Eucalyptus tereticornis subsp. mediana, and I quote from VICFLORA

“In Gippsland, forms attributed to this taxon have isolated occurrences on the Snowy River, with its main distribution west from the Tambo River valley to Sale and Macalister River valley at Licola. It grows on riverbanks, wetlands, and plains and low hills away from streams. Once common in this area but widely cleared and now with remnants in poor health.”

Back roads and lanes are a stronghold for these trees, and after good rainfall, and a lack of defoliating leaf-eating beetles over recent years, the local trees are in excellent condition with fresh green foliage. Click to enlarge.

Along this back road there is an example of inosculation, or natural approach grafting that is a puzzle. Usually the reasons for examples of this occurrence are quite obvious, but that is certainly not the case with this one, first photographed ten years ago.

The previous post on the subject prompted another visit to photograph and ponder. Apparently two trees have grafted together along their trunks, but how on earth has one left the ground with its lignotuber now approximately 1.2 metres above the grass.

Two more images showing the trunks fused before again being separate.

There must of course be an explanation, but for the time being it remains a mystery.