We start here a thread depicting Eucalyptus cultivation around the world. Some 200 years after their discovery eucalypts have become some of the most important travelling plants in human history, introduced in countries in all continents. Their importance as source of timber and non timber products, as landscape elements, as ornamental plants, is one of the outstanding contributions of Australia to the world.
We will be adding here a list of contributing authors. We hope it grows!
Wherever you are, consider sharing your images with us to enlarge this thread depicting Eucalyptus cultivation around the world and help creating an international online gallery: Eucalyptus, the global plants. But please, not just trees. People, and trees. Simply contact us, and we will find the best way to receive your images to later add them to the thread.
Sir David Attenborough has been travelling the world for the last 50 years to show us the wonders of nature in all its forms. There are so many amazing moments captured in film with him around that choosing just one is a though choice. But this is EUCALYPTOLOGICS, the Eucalyptus Blog, so the natural choice has to be witnessing a Giant among Giants showing us King Regnans. Enjoy the Mountain Ash in its old growth Australian forest habitat!
(click to play) King Regnans Giant Eucalyptus video courtesy of BBC
Originally released by 1995, the Peabody Award Winner nature documentary The Private Life of Plants by the BBC is a striking trip around the world to unveil the secrets of plant evolution, adaptation and struggle for survival in this ever changing world we all have the priviledge to warden.
Attenborough's comments wisely blended with amazing photography and Richard Grassby-Lewis' musical companion make this piece of art a milestone in the divulgation of botany, biogeography, ecology and environmental science. And the 7 minute long piece on Eucalyptus is certainly worth watching. But do not forget the other 285 minutes!
"Go, without delay. Leave anything else you have to do. Nothing is more pressing because nothing is more precious for you to do during your trip to São Paulo but visiting the Forestry Station at Rio Claro. Anything else matters little. Here you will find what you cannot see anywhere else. Everything is unheard of, gigantic, majestic... If you want a boost to your pride of being Brazilian, but with a well deserved and fair pride, then go to Rio Claro. And when leaving the place, travel straight to Rio de Janeiro... There is nothing else of interest to see afterwards for whom got to know the wonderful work of a Brazilian whose name so few remember: Navarro de Andrade"
Excerpts of correspondence between writers Monteiro Lobato & Celestino Silveira (1945)
We have seen previously here in EUCALYPTOLOGICS examples of Eucalyptus Giants both in Europe and in Australia surviving as heritage trees, and followed the development of the Eucalyptus Atlantic rainforest in Europe from a botanical rarity to a major timber resource. But meanwhile all this was slowly happening, a major figure was to emerge from the rich soils of Brazil. Before him the industrial uses of the ubiquitous Australian trees overseas had known of the failure of Californian expectations. After him Eucalyptus forestry in America but also in the world would change forever. What he successfully started a hundred years ago was to be followed for decades by foresters and silviculturalists in four continents. He was o plantador de eucaliptos. The Eucalyptus planter. The man of A Paulista. Eucalyptus paulistana.
Edmundo Navarro de Andrade (1881-1941), the brief story of an Eucalyptus Giant
1820's - First mentions on Eucalyptus being planted in Brazil as botanical rarity.
1903 - Navarro de Andrade arrives back in Brazil. In some months he would be in charge of forestry experiments and silvicultural research for Paulista Railways at Jundiaí Forest Garden.
1906 - Navarro de Andrade completes the planting of 32000 eucalypts at Jundiaí to compare their growth and industrial potential for short cycle timber production against 8000 native Brazilian trees. Eucalyptus won.
1909 - Navarro de Andrade starts mass planting of industrial Eucalyptus crops at Río Claro to provide fuelwood, sleepers and poles for Paulista Railways. The experience on the 2200 ha of Rio Claro would spread on over 20 extra massive plantings along the main lines of this railroad in order to create a local supply of firewood/charcoal for steam locomotives.
1910 - Four Eucalyptus specimens leave the Paulista nurseries at Rio Claro and are planted among dozens of thousands more. But these have a certain significance. Fifteen years later they will travel as wood logs with Navarro de Andrade to the United States to be processed experimentally into a pulp of cellulose first and further into high quality printed paper, pioneering the birth of a short fibre Brazilian Eucalyptus based Cellulosic Pulp & Paper Industry.
1913 - Navarro de Andrade visits Joseph Henry Maiden in Sydney during a world tour. Eucalyptus planter and Eucalyptus botanist talk on their favourite trees. Edmundo is gifted by J. H. Maiden with plates from the Herbarium of New South Wales and provided with seeds of over 150 additional Eucalyptus species to the ones he had already trialled.
1916 - Building of Museu do Eucalipto starts at Rio Claro to store the vast amounts of knowledge being generated by Navarro de Andrade, plus artifacts and samples of all products derived from Eucalyptus trees. Nowadays known as the Eucalyptus Museum "Navarro de Andrade", it is unique in the world.
1941 - Navarro de Andrade receives the Frank N. Meyer Medal for Plant Genetic Resources from the American Genetics Association. He would pass away some months later leaving the impressive legacy of 24 million planted eucalypt trees. If not more.
1942 - Edmundo's nephew, Armando Navarro Sampaio, continues the work on Eucalyptus cultivation and starts genetic improvement protocols following the footprints and legacy of his uncle. Soon Brazilian railroads would stop using eucalypt charcoal for power generation and start using eucalypt poles to build the newer electrified lines, but steel factories were to continue demanding their timber for energy generation purposes until nowadays. At the same time one of the major Eucalyptus pulp and paper industries in the world started to develop.
2007 - More than 4 billion Eucalyptus trees of over 150 species grow in the different climates of Brazil. Just a handful of them are prevalent but they have become a strategic timber resource of such a magnitude that whatever happens within this Eucalyptus Agricultural Superpower has a global impact.
We have already seen in this blog some images of the Giant Eucalyptus of Spain & Portugal. And while telling the story of these giant eucalypts we had mentioned that among those at Souto da Retorta (Lugo, Spain) tradition marks one of them, O Avó de Chavín (The Grandfather), as the main shrine of a magical place.
Images and movie are courtesy of El Blog de Forestman, yet another Naturalist corner of the Internet cultivated by foresters and a window to watch the inhabitants of the Spanish woods. Bookmark that place.
Fig. 1: Examples of cold hardy Eucalyptus forestry seedling commercial nursery stock for afforestation. (Click image to enlarge)
Propagating Eucalyptus from seed is easy. But easy and efficient are variable concepts that have to be considered depending on plant production targets. Amenity growing and commercial nursery production share the same basic concepts, but a considerable amount of extra details must be considered in each particular case. The basic idea should always be "each seed matters" no matter at what stage of seedling growing you are. The closer the final results are to this key initial idea, the better. But inbetween the ideal maximum efficiency and total failure many results can be satisfactory from both technical and financial points of view.
Today we present you a small sequence of basic stages from Eucalyptus seed sowing to final plant dispatch using one of the simplest methods. It can be of aid for those growing eucalypts in small amounts and without using fully mechanised industrial processes.
Eucalyptus Seedbed Preparation
Fig. 2: Example of simple methodology for Eucalyptus germination substrate mix preparation and Eucalyptus seed activation procedure. (Click image to enlarge)
Eucalyptus germinants to plantable seedling stock
Fig. 3: Example of mobilisation to definitive containers and Eucalyptus growing phase to final desired size. (Click image to enlarge)
Devil is in the details
Some of the important details to enhance the efficiency of your Eucalyptus growing method at nursery stage have to do with concepts as seed quality, seed purity, need of pre-germination treatments, sowing methodology and timing, germination procedures, growing environment, nursery infrastructures, production schedule, finished desired plant specifications, alternative methodologies for each step of the productive process and cost vs. efficiency financial analysis.
Plant quality for Eucalyptus forestry seedling production is a mix of:
30%Plant morphology --> Nursery practice --> Productive Process Engineering
10%Luck --> Shit happens
As you see, more than half the chances of long term success for high quality Eucalyptus plant stock has to do with seed quality. More importantly at industrial scale commercial operations where mechanisation and infrastructure account positively on easier nursery practice.
Wanna know how?
Fig 4: Ornamental Eucalyptus 'Blue Silver' sculpted as big bonsai
Complementary to ornamentalEucalyptus market oriented experience GIT Forestry Consulting's team of Agronomic and Forestry Engineers has conducted forestry-stock nursery trials in Northwestern Spain with select germplasm of over 15 Eucalyptus types having potential for timber production in temperate humid Atlantic climates, and has sorted out detailed individualised solutions to adapt successful productive process engineering to different nursery infrastructures and industrial scale plant production schemes.
Fig. 5: High quality forestry standard Eucalyptus seedlings at nursery
An interesting range of potential products for the Iberian and European forestry plant market has been obtained matching high quality standards.
This know how (what + when + how + why + how much) and our ability to organise training courses for your nursery staff is now available via consulting agreement to wholesale and specialist forestry plant nurseries interested in joining cooperative strategies for production and commercialization.
Contact GIT Forestry Consulting - Eucalyptologics
If interested, we are happy to hear from you. Just fill the form and provide us with full contact details and a short description of your company's activity.
The cultivation of Eucalyptus in the Pacific Northwest has had to do with trialling of species for relatively a long time now, sometimes as ornamentals and other times as part of forestry hardwood trials. It is however a relatively recent trend, especially if compared to the very old tradition for the cultivation of Eucalyptus in California.
One of the steps in this process of increasing eucalypt growing had to do with the works of an Oregonian forester, keen tree grower and adventurous fan of the Australian trees.
Lee O. Hunt (1912?-2002), who would later be President of the Douglas County Small Woodland Association, started methodic experimentation at nursery and field trials with 14 species of Eucalyptus back in 1971, focusing in those with good prospects for timber production in short rotations and having enough potential tolerance to cold as to be grown in Southwestern Oregon and survive winters there.
Some known Eucalyptus trial locations in Oregon State
Planting at different trial locations ranging from 150 to 800 m altitude took place along the 1970's, and response to frost damage and growth rates where assessed, making it an interesting study of acclimation for the tested seed provenances of Eucalyptus. Some of the known places where these studies and those later ones made by other foresters took place are:
North Williamette Experiment Station (Oregon State University, Clackamas County), where temperatures have reached absolute minima of -17ºC in the 1971-2000 period. Earlier Eucalyptus trials assessed by Dr. Robert L. Ticknor, who was also President of the American Rhododendron Society.
Near Bridge (Douglas County, OR, Highway 42, in the western slope of the Coast Range): 4 species planted in 1975 by Lee O. Hunt.
Schofield Creek (near Reedsford, Douglas County, OR, 87 km to the NW of Roseburg): 6 species planted in 1978 by Lee O. Hunt.
Willis Creek Tree Farm (near Winston, Douglas County, OR): 7 species planted in 1979, 8 additional species in 1981, 4 extra species in 1982 by Lee O. Hunt. Suffered temperatures as low as -16ºC during the first winters, albeit in milder winters they did not reach absolute minima below -10ºC.
Near Warren (to the Northwest of Vancouver, OR) : 3 species in 1984 by Oregon State University.
Near Siletz (Lincoln County, OR): 3 species in 1985 by OSU.
Near Corvallis: 2 species in 1987 by OSU.
Some of the eucalyptspecies trialled for survival %, tolerance to cold and growth rates in Oregon within this period (1971-1987) were:
Eucalyptus camphora - E. cinerea - E. coccifera - E. dalrympleana - E. delegatensis - E. glaucescens - E. globulus - E. gunnii ssp. gunnii - E. gunnii ssp. archeri - E. gunnii ssp. divaricata - E. irbyi (E. viminalis x dalrympleana) - E. nitens - E. nova-anglica - E. pauciflora - E. stelluata - E. subcrenulata - E. viminalis - E. urnigera
The eucalypts of Stan & Lee
Part of the seed used in these horticultural and forestry trials was sourced by Dr. Stanley Gessel (1917-1995), Professor of Forest Soils and later Dean of the College of Forest Resources at the University of Washington (Seattle, WA), who had visited some of the Australian eucalypt forests and brought back to the USA fresh Eucalyptus seedlots from CSIRO. From these seeds he would also be later responsible of plantings within Seattle and a major influence for future eucalypt growers in the shores of the Puget Sound.
Lee O. Hunt's experimental Eucalyptus nursery at Winston provided also several thousand seedlings per year to local private woodland owners interested in fast growing species with an aim to firewood production during the late 1970's and the 1980's, being a vector for the early introduction of many previously unheard of Eucalyptus taxa in Oregon State and the Pacific Northwest.
From those seeds, these fruits
After the trial efforts previously mentioned ceased in the early 1990's, many new species of Eucalyptus trees had well spread as exotic ornamental or landscape trees in many areas of Oregon, Washington and the British Columbia. Specialist nurseries started propagating these and other newer species which were later submitted to cold hardiness tests in the gardens of adventurous exotic plant growers.
As an example of this horticultural trend our friend Ian Barclay, currently involved in The Desert Northwest project, has tested over 115 eucalypt species in Olympia and Poulsbo (WA) from the the 1990's onwards. If you have not yet read about cold hardy eucalyptus in Ian's The Hardy Eucalyptus Page, you are certainly missing a great information resource on these plants.
Eucalyptus in Oregon: where are Lee's trees?
Potential locations of Lee O. Hunt's Willis Creek Tree Farm Eucalyptus trials
(click to enlarge)
Help us find Stan & Lee's trees! If you live near Roseburg or have easy access to Douglas County in Southwestern Oregon, follow the footprints of Lee Hunt, and hunt the surviving Eucalyptus of these old trials. Some 20 to 30 year old at the moment if still standing, they should give hints on adult tree size achieved by these tree species in the area and could be interesting seed sources representative of cold hardy Oregonian Eucalyptus local races.
If you decide to take such a journey, remember to watch these links first:
Hunt, Lee O. (1983) Adaptability of some Eucalyptus species in southwest Oregon. In: Standiford, Richard B & Ledig, F Thomas, technical coordinators. Proceedings of a work-shop on Eucalyptus in California, June 14-16, 1983, Sacramento, California. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW 69. Berkeley, CA: Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture; 9-13
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Welcome to the blog space of GIT Forestry Consulting. Here you can find regular comments on a wide range of topics concerning practical knowledge onEucalyptus cultivation, be it at nursery stage, at your gardens or at wider scale forestry plantations in cold temperate climates. Our main objective is trying to help growers worldwide with their doubts or comments in a more interactive way. In addition to the material here you are also welcome to visit our main website or contact us.