Relic from Isis Scrub gives new hope to rare Hoop Pine

2 Jan 2014
A giant Hoop Pine tree from the original Isis Scrub has produced seeds for the first time in many years.

Bundaberg Regional Council today engaged a group of volunteers from Childers to collect seeds from this rare tree and grow 100 seedlings which will be planted throughout the district.

Natural Resources spokesman Cr Danny Rowleson said the tree was estimated to be at least 200 years old.

“Hoop Pines were very common in the Isis Scrub and were a great source of timber,” he said.

“For some reason, this particular tree survived and now has a new chance to reproduce.”

The Hoop Pine is on private property just south of Childers and is 30m tall with a diameter of 1.1m.

Cr Rowleson said the seedlings would be raised by members of Isis Bushcare for Council and would be planted in several locations around Childers as well as in the Bundaberg Botanic Gardens.

“The landowner knows this tree very well and said it has never produced so many seeds.”

The Isis Scrub rainforest originally covered 360 square kilometres and was described in 1863 as a "mass of hoop pine tops ... an enormous supply of timber ... growing on an exceedingly fertile area, in the heart of a forgotten country". 

“Growing in abundance on the rich red volcanic soil, many millions of cubic feet of hoop pine were logged and hauled to rafting grounds on the Isis River, which connected with the Burrum River, and by this mode of transport the timber eventually reached Maryborough,” Cr Rowleson said.

“That amount of timber would be worth a fortune today.”

He said the history of the Isis Scrub was fascinating to many Childers residents.

“With the benefit of hindsight, the Isis Scrub could have been protected similar to the Wongarra Scrub, written into the Council Planning Schemes to protect areas of regional heritage significance. 

“The seeds provided by this wonderful specimen will allow Bushcare and Council to reestablish some of the lost Isis heritage,” Cr Rowleson said.

 

 

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