The Beautiful Rainbow Gum

Rainbow Gum 1Mother nature never ceases to surprise me. Thought I knew a fair bit about gum trees, but I didn’t know about Eucalyptus deglupta (Rainbow Eucalyptus) until a few weeks ago. Have I been the only one unaware of this astonishingly beautiful tree?

It originated in the rainforests of New Guinea, Sulawesi and Mindanao and is the only eucalypt to naturally occur in the Rainbow Gum 2northern hemisphere. It is one of four species not endemic to Australia. They can grow to sixty-five metres tall with a trunk diameter of over two metres.

Vivid stripes of colour show as the brown bark peels away to reveal a bright green layer beneath. As time passes the green fades through an astounding range of colours – dark green, blue, purple, orange, red, crimson, claret and back to brown. Then the process begins all over again, giving a beautiful rainbow brush-stroke effect. It’s hard to believe these trees are real.

They are apparently widely grown in tropical areas in pulp-wood plantations. What a magnificent sight that must be! I think in this case pictures really are worth more than words …

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