Valley of the Giants
In the subtropical forests of the eastern Australia and Tasmania grow many giant eucalypts, including such amazing landmarks as the 99.8 m tall Centurion. Western Australia in comparison to these lush lands might seem to be barren – but here also exist pockets of unique giant eucalypt forests.
The most impressive is Valley of the Giants. In fact this is not a true valley but a sector of pristine forest in the beautiful Walpole – Nornalup National Park.
This is truly unique forest, a relict of ancient, more wet climate with numerous unique species of plants and animals. Here is the highest orchid diversity in Australia – 104 species, 37 plants from this area are exclusive – endemic. In the forest live some unique animals – such as the frog Geocrinia lutea or the relict species of spiders Moggridgea tingle and Micropholcomma linnaei (the last was discovered in the fallen leaves of Giant Tingle Tree). These species have not been frozen in time but evolved, adapted to the changing environment.
Most spectacular local species is red tingle (Eucalyptus jacksonii) – giant eucalipt. This tree is found almost exclusively in Walpole-Nornalup National Park and is a relict of former tropical forests. Tree has well adapted to local conditions – it grows in area with a comparatively high rainfall (up to 1,300 mm per annum) and frequent fires. Fire may burn out the trunk of the tree but it nevertheless survives – outer rim of the trunk is well protected and continues to maintain the crown with water and nutrients. Valley of Giants (and also Giant Tingle Tree) has experienced forest fires in 1937 and 1951.
Red tingle is adapted also to solid granite bedrock – it has shallow root system and the giant, up to 70 m tall tree is kept by a massive, buttressed trunk.
Mother of the forest – Giant Tingle Tree
There are rumours that earlier existed larger tingle trees – with a circumference up to 26 m. One enormous and popular tree (also often called Giant Tingle Tree) fell down in 1990.
The current Giant Tingle Tree ("Hollow trunk") was noticed by Ted Bellanger in 1952. In these times there was taken a photograph with car inside the hollow.
This giant tree is very unusual – it is "emptied out" by a giant hollow. This hollow is some 15 m high and has been created by forest fires and further expanded by insects and fungus. Now in this hollow can enter one hundred people – and it still would not feel congested. Tree looks as if it may fall at the next storm but it miraculously stands and persists.
It is assessed that the Giant Tingle Tree is some 400 years old. Tree has lost upper half of its trunk and thus is much lower than many other old red tingles. Upper branches of the tree are broken by winds and lightning.
Giant Tingle Tree is a popular tourist destination – not too far from it is located car park and there is a 800 m long circular walk towards the tree.
Not too far are other giant red tingle trees – "Pleated Lady" with a circumference of 18.6 m and height of 38 m, "Grey Bark" with a circumference of 17.0 m and height of 40 m, "Big Red" with a circumference of 16.5 m and height of 52 m.
Giant Tingle Tree is included in the following list:
- National Register of Big Trees. Accessed 29.07.14.
|Coordinates:||34.9831 S 116.7897 E (mistake up to 200 m)|
|Address:||Australia and Oceania, Australia, Western Australia, South West region, Walpole-Nornalup National Park, some 3 km north-west from Nornalup in the Valley of the Giants|
|Alternate names:||"Hollow trunk"|
|Species:||Red tingle (Eucalyptus jacksonii Maiden)|
|Diameter:||more than 6 m|
This giant Australian state is spectacular and very rich with diverse, unusual landmarks. Highlights of Western Australia are refuges of biodiversity in remote parts of desert, amazing cliff formations and unique aboriginal art.
Category includes some of the most impressive and interesting separate trees of the the world. Total number of tree species in the world still is a wild guess – may be 10,000 and may be 100,000 but most likely somewhere in between. Every month there are reported new tree species from the whole world, including the Western Europe.
Eucalypts are a familiar part of Australia’s natural landscape and an integral part of the Australian identity. They have been farmed and used to build houses, furniture, roads, and bridges since the beginning of white settlement. Australians and international visitors alike have been inspired by them, painted them, made films about them, written books about them, and of course Aboriginal Australians have long made musical instruments from them.
Forest Trees of Australia is the essential reference for observing, identifying and obtaining information on the native trees in this country. It describes and illustrates over 300 of the most important indigenous trees, which have been carefully selected for their environmental significance, their importance to the timber industry, or their prominence in the landscape.