Monday, October 3, 2022

AUSTRALIA ~ Grass Tree ~

... Great view of the grass tree... this unusual and iconic plant is native to West Australia... the Noongar name for grass trees is "Balga" and are important to the Aboriginals as a highly valued resource with many uses... they were a "staple" plant, providing food, drink, medicines, fibre and materials for making implements and weapons... the tough leaves were used as knives to cut meat... although protected in national parks, unfortunately the grass tree has been a victim of land clearing... to conserve them they are sometimes removed before an area is cleared and replanted elsewhere... Thanks a lot Cathy!【ツ】

The Balga is a perennial tree-like monocot (grass) that grows up to 5m high, with an often blackened trunk, to over 3m. Grass trees grow at a slow rate of just 2 cm each year. It can take over 20 years for Xanthorrhoea to grow a trunk, and it takes years for them to reach full size.

Balgas are found on grey to black sands, grey-brown loam, brown gravelly sandy clay, laterite, granite. Their range includes the coastal plain and near watercourses. Closely packed whitecream flowers are found on a 1.5-2.5m spike in June or August to December. Balga are often stimulated to flower by fire burning the plant.


Australian Native Wildlife 
(Issued 06-03-2006)

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