Eucalypt Australia is thrilled to announce that the winner of the 2020 Eucalypt of the Year competition is the spectacular Illyarrie, Eucalyptus erythrocorys, also known as the Red-capped Gum.
It’s one of the most distinctive of all the eucalypts, with its dark red bud caps, bright yellow flowers arranged in four tufts, and heavy, woody fruits. It’s totally unique, and not closely-related to any other species of eucalypt.
You can find the Illyarrie in its native home on the west coast of Australia, between Perth and Shark Bay, where it grows on almost pure limestone. However, it’s often planted ornamentally in cities such as Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne and Alice Springs. The species is very tolerant of drought, and rapidly responds to fire by reshooting new growth from the trunk and branches.
In second place we have Eucalyptus regnans, known as the Mountain Ash in Victoria or Swamp Gum in Tasmania. This species holds a lot of tall tree records – it’s the tallest of all eucalypt species, and holds the current title for the tallest tree in Australia, with the Centurion tree standing 100m tall near Tahune in Tasmania.
The iconic Lemon-scented Gum, Corymbia citriodora, has taken out third place. It’s one of only two eucalypt species with lemon-scented leaves, which contain the essential oil citronellal. It grows naturally in woodlands and open forest in central and north Queensland, and can grow up to 45 metres tall.
Now in its third year, the Eucalypt of the Year is decided through public voting throughtout late February and March.
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