Eucalyptus diversicolor, commonly known as karri,is a species of flowering plant in the family Myrtaceae and is endemic to the south-west of Western Australia. It is a tall tree with smooth light grey to cream-coloured, often mottled bark, lance-shaped adult leaves and barrel-shaped fruit. Found in higher rainfall areas, karri is commercially important for its timber.
Eucalyptus diversicolor is a tall forest tree that typically grows to a height of 10–60 m (33–197 ft) but can reach as high as 90 m (300 ft), making it the tallest tree in Western Australia and one of the tallest in the world. As of February 2019, the tallest known living karri is just over 80m tall. A tree south of Pemberton, known as 'The Tyrant' is 69m tall and 11.5m in girth and contains approximately 220m³ of wood in its trunk and is thought to be the largest karri by wood volume. The bark on the trunk and branches is smooth, grey to cream-coloured or pale orange, often mottled and is shed in short ribbons or small polygonal flakes.
The leaves on young plants and on coppice regrowth are arranged in opposite pairs, broadly egg-shaped to almost round, paler on the lower surface, 50–155 mm (2.0–6.1 in) long, 25–100 mm (0.98–3.94 in) wide and petiolate. Adult leaves are arranged alternately, glossy dark green on the upper surface, paler below, lance-shaped, 70–135 mm (2.8–5.3 in) long and 15–37 mm (0.59–1.46 in) wide on a flattened or channelled petiole 10–20 mm (0.39–0.79 in) long. The flower buds are arranged in groups of seven in leaf axils on a rounded peduncle 12–30 mm (0.47–1.18 in) long, each bud on a pedicel 3–6 mm (0.12–0.24 in) long. The buds are oval, 11–16 mm (0.43–0.63 in) long and 5–7 mm (0.20–0.28 in) wide at maturity with a conical operculum. Flowering has been observed in January, April, May, August and December, and the flowers are white. The fruit is a woody barrel-shaped capsule 10–12 mm (0.39–0.47 in) long and 8–10 mm (0.31–0.39 in) wide on a pedicel 5–6 mm (0.20–0.24 in) long with three valves at or below rim level.
Eucalyptus diversicolor was first formally described in 1863 by the botanist Ferdinand von Mueller in his book Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae .The type specimen was collected in 1860 by the botanist Augustus Frederick Oldfield near Wilson Inlet, the location given, in Latin, is In Australiae regionibus depressioribus quam Maxime austro occidentalibus, ubi Blue Gum-tree vocatur.
The botanical name diversicolor is taken from the Latin word diversus meaning to turn apart and color or "separate colours" and refers to the difference between the top of the leaf and its underside.The common name is derived from the Noongar name for the tree karri pronounces ka-ree.
Karri occurs only within the High Rainfall Zone of the South West Botanical Province of Western Australia which receives 900 to 1,300 millimetres (35.4 to 51.2 in) of rain per year, mostly in winter. It mostly occurs within the Warren biogeographic region, but there are some outlying populations including the Porongorup Ranges, Mount Manypeaks, Torbay, Rocky Gully all along the south coast and Karridale and Forest Grove to the north west and the Leeuwin-Naturaliste Ridge to the south of Margaret River to the west of the main belt.
The heart of the karri forest is found near Nannup and Manjimup through to Denmark.
The total area covered by karri forest is less that 200,000 hectares (494,211 acres) which is about one fifth of its virgin growth. The nearest tall tree forests are some 3,000 kilometres (1,864 mi) to the east in Tasmania and Victoria.
Some karri specimens are thought to reach an age of up to 300 years.The soil in which the species grows is often poor, and the tree tends to flower after fire to take advantage of the nutrients released by the combustion of forest litter. The soil is classified as karri loam. Though low in some minor nutrients it is admired for its depth and pasture-growing properties. The depth of the soil is several metres and thought to be created primarily from the bark shed by the tree, which collects at the trunk base to a depth upwards of six metres in mature trees. The karri supports an extensive ecosystem which is connected to the granite outcrops of the lower south-west and the many subsequent creeks and rivers created from runoff. Karri generally dominate in the deep valleys between granite outcrops surrounding the creeks and rivers.
A dense understorey is found in karri forest areas which retains moisture over the hot summers. Associated trees and shrubs found in the understorey include the peppermint ( Agonis flexuosa ), karri sheoak ( Allocasuarina decussata ), karri wattle ( Acacia pentadenia ) and karri oak ( Chorilaena quercifolia ). A diverse assemblage of flowers and smaller plants – around 2,000 plant taxa – make up the mosaic of habitats within the karri forests.
The species is considered invasive in South Africa where it is a problem in the Western Cape region and is locally known a karie. It commonly invades clearings, fynbos, water courses and road sides often out competing local species and is spread easily by seed dispersal.
The wood has a green density of around 1,200 kilograms per cubic metre (75 lb/cu ft) with an air-dried density of about 900 kilograms per cubic metre (56 lb/cu ft). The tree has been logged since the settlement of Western Australia with logging towns appearing throughout the range of the tree and producing hardwood timbers, mostly for construction purposes, for the first 150 years since settlement. The first Karri timber to be felled for export was at the isolated population around Leeuwin, which became known as Karridale. The virtues of the wood were promoted in the 1920s by the state conservator of forests, Charles Lane-Poole, who noted the colonists' preference for other timber as its vulnerability to white ants made it a poor choice for fence posts and railway sleepers. The timber found uses in the state for wagon spokes and wooden pipes, and in England it was found suitable for scantlings by the national railway and telegraph arms by the postal services and was listed among Lloyds shipbuilding timbers as possessing great strength over large lengths.
Fire lookouts were established in the forests using the tallest Karri trees, giving the foresters a commanding view of the landscape. The idea of using karri trees in this way was first suggested in 1937 by a young forester, Don Stewart, who later became Conservator of Forests. The first of these was built on a large marri ( Corymbia calophylla ) at Alco, near Nannup. Eight lookouts were established in the forests between 1937 and 1952. Spotter planes are now used and some of the trees are now used as tourist attractions.
Karri wood is a beautiful mahogany colour, lighter in colour than jarrah. It is used extensively in the building industry, particularly in roofs for the length and knot-free quality of the boards. The wood is also used for flooring, furniture, cabinetry and plywood. The heartwood is golden to reddish brown, often with an orange or purple cast, and tends to darken with age. It has an interlocked grain with a uniform medium-coarse texture.It has the reputation of being termite-prone, although it is nowhere near as susceptible to these insects as pine. It is durable against rot. It is also an excellent furniture wood. Karri honey is widely sought after for its light color and delicate flavor. Tourism to this area is also supported by the Karri.
Some of the main streets of early Sydney were paved with blocks of Karri but have been long since covered by asphalt. The wood was also sent to London for the same purpose.
The species is commercially available and sold in seed form. It germinates readily and prefers a protected sunny position, but is known to be both drought- and frost-sensitive.
Eucalyptus marginata, commonly known as jarrah, djarraly in Noongar language and historically as Swan River mahogany, is a plant in the myrtle family, Myrtaceae and is endemic to the south-west of Western Australia. It is a tree with rough, fibrous bark, leaves with a distinct midvein, white flowers and relatively large, more or less spherical fruit. Its hard, dense timber is insect resistant although the tree is susceptible to dieback. The timber has been utilised for cabinet-making, flooring and railway sleepers.
Corymbia ficifolia, commonly known as the red flowering gum, is a species of small tree that is endemic to the south-west of Western Australia. It has rough, fibrous bark on the trunk and branches, egg-shaped to broadly lance-shape adult leaves, flower buds in groups of seven, bright red, pink or orange flowers and urn-shaped fruit. It has a restricted distribution in the wild but is one of the most commonly planted ornamental eucalypts.
Eucalyptus microcorys, commonly known as tallowwood, is a species of medium to tall tree that is endemic to eastern Australia. It has rough, fibrous or string bark on the trunk and branches, lance-shaped to egg-shaped adult leaves, flower buds in groups of seven or nine, white to lemon-yellow flowers and conical fruit. It grows in forests near the coast of Queensland and New South Wales.
Eucalyptus cladocalyx, commonly known as sugar gum, is a species of eucalypt tree found in the Australian state of South Australia. It is found naturally in three distinct populations - in the Flinders Ranges, Eyre Peninsula and on Kangaroo Island.
Eucalyptus eremophila, commonly known as the sand mallet or tall sand mallee, is a species of mallet that is endemic to semi-arid regions of Western Australia. It has smooth pale brown and greyish bark, narrow lance-shaped to elliptical adult leaves, flower buds arranged in groups of between seven and eleven with an elongated operculum, and cup-shaped to barrel-shaped fruit.
Eucalyptus erythrocorys, commonly known as illyarrie, red-capped gum or helmet nut gum, is a species of tree or mallee from Western Australia. It has smooth bark, sickle-shaped to curved adult leaves, characteristically large flower buds in groups of three with a bright red operculum, bright yellow to yellowish green flowers and sculptured, bell-shaped fruit.
Eucalyptus jacksonii, commonly known as the red tingle, is a species of tall tree endemic to the south west Western Australia and is one of the tallest trees found in the state. It has thick, rough, stringy reddish bark from the base of the trunk to the thinnest branches, egg-shaped to lance-shaped adult leaves, flower buds in groups of seven, white flowers and shortened spherical to barrel-shaped fruit.
Karri forest is a tall open forest type dominated by Eucalyptus diversicolor (karri), one of the tallest hardwoods in the world.
Eucalyptus cloeziana, commonly known as Gympie messmate or dead finish, is a species of tree that is endemic to Queensland. It has rough, flaky to fibrous bark on its trunk, smooth bark above, lance-shaped to curved adult leaves that are much paler on the lower side, flower buds in groups of seven, white flowers and hemispherical fruit.
Eucalyptus youngiana, commonly known as large-fruited mallee, Ooldea mallee and yarldarlba, is a species of mallee, less commonly a tree, that in native to arid and semi-arid areas of southern Western Australia and South Australia. It has rough, fibrous bark on some or all of the trunk, smooth bark above, lance-shaped adult leaves, flower buds in groups of three, red, pink or bright yellow flowers and short, broad, conical fruit.
Eucalyptus megacarpa, commonly known by its Noongar name of bullich, is a species of robust mallee or small to medium-sized tree with a scattered distribution in the forests of the south-west of Western Australia. It has smooth bark throughout, lance-shaped to curved adult leaves, flower buds in groups of three, white flowers and cup-shaped, bell-shaped or hemispherical fruit.
Eucalyptus salmonophloia, commonly known as salmon gum, wurak or weerluk, is a species of small to medium-sized tree that is endemic to Western Australia. It has smooth bark, narrow lance-shaped to curved adult leaves, flower buds in groups of between nine and thirteen, creamy white flowers and hemispherical fruit.
Eucalyptus pellita, commonly known as the large-fruited red mahogany, is a species of medium to tall tree that is endemic to north-eastern Queensland. It has rough, fibrous or flaky bark on the trunk and branches, lance-shaped to egg-shaped adult leaves, flower buds in groups of seven, white flowers and cup-shaped to conical fruit.
Eucalyptus planchoniana, commonly known as the needlebark stringybark or bastard tallowwood is a species of small to medium-sized tree that is endemic to eastern Australia. It has rough, stringy bark on the trunk and larger branches, lance-shaped to curved adult leaves, flower buds in groups of seven, white flowers and cup-shaped, cylindrical or barrel-shaped fruit.
Eucalyptus baileyana, commonly known as Bailey's stringybark, is a tree endemic to near-coastal areas of eastern Australia. It has rough, stringy bark on its trunk and main branches, lance-shaped adult leaves, flower buds in groups of seven, white flowers with stamens in four bundles and urn-shaped to more or less spherical fruit.
Eucalyptus cooperiana, commonly known as the many-flowered mallee, is a species of mallee that is endemic to an area along the south coast of Western Australia. It is described as being "of striking appearance by reason of its smooth, white bark and acutely angled branchlets". It has lance-shaped adult leaves, flower buds in groups of between nine and thirteen or more, creamy yellow flowers and urn-shaped fruit.
Eucalyptus longicornis, commonly known as red morrel, morryl, poot or pu, is a species of large tree that is endemic to the south-west of Western Australia. It has rough, fibrous, fissured bark on the trunk, smooth greyish bark above, flower buds in groups of seven or more, white flowers and shortened spherical fruit.
Eucalyptus doratoxylon, commonly known as the spearwood mallee, spearwood or geitch-gmunt in Noongar language is a species of mallee that is endemic to Western Australia. It has smooth, powdery white bark, lance-shaped to curved adult leaves mostly arranged in opposite pairs, flower buds in groups of seven, white to pale yellow flowers and pendulous, more or less spherical fruit.
Eucalyptus raveretiana, commonly known as the black ironbox, is a species of small to medium-sized tree that is endemic to Queensland. It has rough, fibrous or flaky bark on the trunk and larger branches, smooth pale grey bark above, lance-shaped leaves, flower buds in groups of seven on a branched peduncle, white flowers and small, hemispherical fruit.
Boronia gracilipes, commonly known as karri boronia, is a plant in the citrus family, Rutaceae and is endemic to the south-west of Western Australia. It is an erect, spindly shrub with compound leaves and pink, four-petalled flowers.