Thursday, November 28, 2013

Lovely Lacebarks

Brachychiton discolor

I photographed this lovely tree in the grounds of the Goombungee town hall last weekend.
This local native species has been planted in a number of sites in our area, notably along the New England Highway at Highfields, and we are now able to appreciate the young trees as they reach flowering age.
Lacebarks (like their relatives the flame trees) tend to have a partial loss of their leaves at flowering time. Trees planted against a background others with dark green canopies are shown off to their best advantage, but the flowers are also quite stunning on a mature tree with fairly complete leaf-drop, against a background of a blue November sky.

As with flame trees, part of their beauty is the scatter of flowers below them.

The colours of the dropped flowers are a stronger shade of pink than the flowers on the tree.

 You'll also notice the rather lovely rusty-hairy buds, and the felty texture of the flowers.

Lacebarks are beautiful in the garden from an early age, because of the attractive shape of their juvenile leaves.  Small trees are sometimes used as potted indoor plants for the beauty of their leaves alone.

As they mature, they develop a trunk which shows their relationship with bottle trees.

This lovely old tree (the one with the white bark)  is a naturally occurring plant, a remnant of long-gone rainforest on Mt. Kynoch.

Lacebarks  get their common name from the attractive bark of the mature trees. In their native rainforest environment (and in gardens on the damp side of town) they attract a garden of beautiful lichens.

See my article, “Beautiful Brachychitons” of December 30, 2008, for more on this outstanding local plant.


Anonymous said...

The Lacebark planted in the Nukku Nook garden in Blackbutt is now over 3 metres in height and was planted just 15 months ago. It is already very attractive and perhaps will flower next year for the first time. The garden is highlighting some of our natural heritage as one of the activities of the Blackbutt & District Tourism & Heritage Association.


Patricia Gardner said...

Hello Ray.
Nice to hear from you.
I called in at Nukku Nook a few months ago and was very impressed at how well that delightful garden is coming on.
We had a picnic there. It's a great spot for visitors to Blackbutt to stop for a while.