Thursday, 17 July 2014

MELBOURNE STREET TREES 82 - WHITE BOX

Eucalyptus albens known as the white box is a common eucalyptus tree of the western slopes and plains of New South Wales and adjacent areas in Queensland and Victoria. An isolated population grows in the southern Flinders Ranges in South Australia. The scientific and common names is derived from the white deposits over the leaves and gumnuts, while the epithet "box" comes from the box-like tesselated pattern in the bark.

George Bentham described the white box in 1867 from material collected by botanist and explorer, Allan Cunningham, along the Macquarie River. Joseph Henry Maiden had regarded it as a subspecies of Eucalyptus hemiphloia in 1904. It is related to grey box (E. moluccana) and inland grey box (E. microcarpa). Hybridization with grey box has been reported in the Hunter Valley.

Eucalyptus albens will grow into a medium to tall tree. The trunk is short and straight. The crown is rounded to spreading. Bark is persistent, light grey to whitish with bleached patches. Branches are smooth and white. Leave are oval to lance-like and are grey to bluish-green on both surfaces. The buds are carried in clusters of three to seven and are spindle-shaped. Large flowers are profuse and creamy-white. The gum nuts are barrel-shaped.In the winter and spring white boxes flower generously over a long period. Large honeyeaters and rainbow lorikeets fill the trees with strident bird song as they eat the nectar.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.







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