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West Wellington Flora PDF Print E-mail

Common Eucalypts of West Wellington

Eucalyptus delegatensis
Common name: White top stringy bark or Alpine Ash (in Victoria)

(Photo of the actual coupe on White Timber Mountain.)

The iconic white timber that White Timber Mountain was named for, Eucalyptus delegatensis is a large cool climate eucalypt, averaging a height of 50 to 70 metres, sometimes even taller. Diameter is usually one to two metres. The white or grey trunk is tall and straight and forms two-thirds of the entire height of the tree. It is commonly found in Tasmania at altitudes from 350 to 1000 metres; higher than any other harvested species. It is the dominant species in mountainous wet sclerophyll forests, often preferring south and east sloping aspects and the heads of river valleys, such as the almost pure stand at the very top of Crabtree Valley which is marked as a coupe on Forestry Tasmania's (FT's) three year plan.  E.delegatensis thrives where the annual rainfall is 1000mm to 1500mm, which means a period of below average rainfall, such as in the past decade, could significantly impact on species recovery.

In wetter areas E. delegatensis forests often have an understorey of rainforest species in a rainforest succession.  In the White Timber Mountain coupe MV001A these understorey species include myrtle, sassafras, native laurel, pandani and celery top pine. Other species in this coupe include Tasmanian icons such as snowberry, cyathodes (cheeseberry), mountain pepper, Tasmanian waratah, Billardiera (mountain blueberry), mountain current and correa (native fuchsia).

Forestry Tasmania does not consider any of this understorey to be of value and it will be burned after clear felling. The myrtle, sassafras and celery-top pine trees are considered too small to be of commercial value therefore it is valid to destroy them. As the trees would obviously grow to a much greater size if left alone this attitude shows that Forestry Tasmania has no genuine regard for sustainability of Tasmanian specialty timbers, or the diversity of native forests it harvests.


Eucalyptus regnans
Common name: Swamp gum or mountain ash (Victoria)

Eucalyptus regnans is one of the tallest trees in the world, exceeded in maximum height only by the Californian redwoods. Heights normally range from 60 to 80 metres but can be up to 100 metres in optimal conditions. It prefers a cool climate, a good loamy soil rather than clay, and an average annual rainfall of over1200mm. These forest giants are one of the most important hardwoods in Australia for both saw-log and pulp. They are not widely distributed in Tasmania, being mostly found in only the north-east and south-east. West Wellington has likely been targeted for these trees as supplies become depleted elsewhere.


Eucalyptus subcrenulata
Common name: Tasmanian alpine yellow gum

E.subcrenulata is a small montane to alpine species usually found at the upper altitude limits of wet scherophyll forest. Height is usually between 10 and 20 metres. In Tasmania it is found in the cool, wet climatic zones where rainfall is 1000 to 2000mm a year and falls reliably all year round. This is not a species likely to regenerate well during periods of below average rainfall.


Eucalyptus coccifera
Common name: Tasmanian snow gum

This alpine species is mostly found at altitudes between 1000 to 1400 metres. In exposed alpine areas it will often be quite stunted, but in more protected situations it can grow to a height of 40 metres. In its natural distribution it receives 1000 to 2000mm average rainfall, and enjoys cool summers. It is considered to be of no commercial value but it has great environmental value as a stabilising tree that will survive harsher alpine conditions than any other eucalypt.Conical sheoak

Source: Forest Trees of Tasmania: Field Guide Forest Resources (publisher) undated



Allocasuarina Duncanii

West Wellington is one of the last few refuges for Allocasuarina Duncanii otherwise known as the Conical Sheoak. This plant is listed as 'rare' under the Threatened Species Protection Act 1995 and is a 'priority' species within the Regional Forest Agreement. This conifer, growing to 8m, is not listed in Forestry Tasmania's Forest Practices Plans for the Region.



Informal Botanical Survey

On a recent field trip a local botanist listed the plant species found in 3 of the coupes due for clearfelling in Forestry Tasmania's 3 year plan:

"Bear in mind that this is only a basic list of plants seen from the road verges.The whole day was so interesting and certainly expanded my knowledge of forestry operations. One important point to bear in mind is that the majority of rainforest species such as Myrtle, Sasafrass and Celery Top Pine (mostly in MV001A) are immature and will be burnt as waste, a couple of small areas may be kept for animal habitat.  Because all these species are immature (post 1967) they will not have set seed and a catastrophic fire such as clearfelling and burning will mean that these species will struggle to reappear in any regrowth. To rely on neighbouring areas for reseeding is problematic at best. Eucalyptus delegatensis will stay as the dominant species after clearfell. Alternatively it is my opinion that if there were no clearfelling the area would slowly evolve to full rainforest, probably taking a few hundred years; not a time frame that Forestry Tas considers a lot. The other coupes will verge more towards sub-alpine (RU051A) and wet sclerophyll forest (RU050C) over time."



Plant name RU051A MV001A RU050C
Acacia riceana  * * *
Acaena ssp (probably novae-zelandiae) (Buzzy) *    
Anopterus glandulosus (Native Laurel)  * * *
Aristotelia peduncularis (Heartberry) *    
Atherosperma moschatum (Sassafras)  * * *
Bauera rubioides (Native Dogrose)  * * *
Bedfordia salicina (Blanketleaf)     *
Blechnum Nudum   *  
Blechnum wattsii *    
Correa lawrenciana (Mountain Correa)  * * *
Cyathodes glauca (Purple Cheeseberry) *    
Dicksonia antarctica (Manfern)  * * *
Eucalyptus coccifera (Snow Gum)  * * *
Eucalyptus delegatensis  * * *
Eucalyptus johnstonii *    
Eucalyptus ovata  (only a few) * * *
Eucalyptus regnans     *
Eucalyptus rubida (?) (noted by Terry Ware)   *  
Ficinia nodosa (Knobby Club Rush)  * * *
Gahnia Grandis (Cutting Grass)  * * *
Gaultheria hispida (Snowberry)  * * *
Geranium potentilloides (Mountain Cranesbill) *    
Gonocarpus micranthus (?)   *  
Gonocarpus montanus (Mountain Raspwort) *    
Hakea lissosperma (Mountain Needlebush)   *  
Leptecophylla juniperina ssp. parvifolia (Pink Mountainberry)  * * *
Leptospermum lanigerum (Wolly Teatree)  * * *
Lomatia polymorpha (Mountian Guitar Plant)   *  
Monotoca glauca (Goldenwood)   *  
Nematolepis squamea (Satinwood) *    
Nothofagus cunninghamii (Myrtle)  * * *
Olearia argophylla (Musk Daisybush)   *  
Olearia persoonioides (Geebung Daisybush)  * * *
Olearia ramulosa (Twiggy Daisybush)     *
Olearia stellulata (Sawleaf Daisybush)  * * *
Olearia viscosa (?) (Sticky Daisybush)   *  
Orites diversifolia  * * *
Oxylobium ellipticum (Golden Rosemary) *    
Ozothamnus ferrugineus (?) (Tree Everlasting Bush)   *  
Phyllocladus asplenifolius (Celery Top Pine)   *  
Pimelea drupacae (Cherry Riceflower) *    
Polystichum proliferum (Mother Shield Fern)  * * *
Pomaderris apetala (Dogwood)   *  
Prostanthera lasianthos (Christmas Mintbush) *    
Pultenea (stricta?) *    
Richea dracophylla (Dragonleaf Richea) *    
Tasmannia lanceolata (Native Pepper)  * * *
Telopea truncata (Tasmanian Waratah) *    




Last Updated ( Aug 19, 2010 at 11:31 PM )