trees that speak…

From the high plains to the deserts – the Eucalyptus is botanically iconic to Australia. With over 700 species ranging from stunted shrubs in the arid regions to the tallest flowering plant on the planet, their diversity is as grand as their stature. Most species are not frost or cold tolerant (temps down to -5C) though there is one species that lives in the alps of the mainland affectionately known as the ‘snow gum’. (Eucalyptus pauciflora ). Whilst three other cold tolerant species exist in the highlands of central Tasmania. Growing as woodlands or open woodlands from 1300m-1800m ASL in Tasmania,Victoria and New South Wales where they form the altitudinal limit of the tree line.

 The ‘snow gum’ can become a gnarled old warrior as it eeks out an existance in poor soil with short growing seasons in harsh climates. Sometimes shedding bark revealing bright green,yellow or even orange-red under bark. It certainly makes for a brilliant dash of colour particularly in the snow. When in these alpine regions I often find it hard not to get ‘lost’ in their beauty and character and always find myself searching for those special individuals. Specimans with so much character that they speak for themselves.



‘Snowgum dreaming’ – Fuji G617, Velvia 50.


~ by Tony Middleton on November 16, 2008.

20 Responses to “trees that speak…”

  1. whilst on mt wellington in tasmania i took some shots of what i think is young eucalyptus coccifera with their blood red curled bark in the snow. it certainly makes for a brilliant contrast in an otherwise neutral setting. i rate shots like yours that effectively combine their character with the dense foggy atmosphere of alpine regions.

  2. Cheers Cain – sometimes it can be more difficult than one thinks finding the ‘right’ tree or composition. Did you take any images of the trees ? Mt.Wellington is pretty awesome – rather extreme and sort of like our version of Mt Washington in the USA.

  3. Brilliant mate, seen those snow gums in a Ken Duncan photo as well and they’re so gorgeous. Good title too 🙂
    I am a big fan of all gum trees, they’re always real characters and beautiful! The colours and lines in these snow gums is extraordinary. I know you’re limited by the Fuji 617 and it’s DOF but I’d love to see a shot with the view very close to the gum trees to see the texture and the bark on the ground close up.

  4. Thanks Flemming ! When I was going through this image I actually did a square crop. One that would be a 6×6 on the original. I’ll add it to this post as I think it is quite nice as well.

  5. Square one is really nice too, those gum tree details and that bark on the ground is just spectacular!

  6. Nice Tony, very ‘Man From Snowy River’
    Love the fog/cloud and the higlighted foreground.
    We get E.pauciflora in the Grampians, but not in huge quantities or too the colouring like in the high country.

  7. love these shot’s Tony!!

    they really are thee most fantastic tree’s to photograph. i’ve seen them in the snow and that’s when they seem to have the most colour. when i was in the snowy’s during Jan they were not as vibrant. but these here really are a stunning green in those strips, maybe the moisture has something to do with them coming to their best. amazing atmosphere too with the fog.

    hopefully will be over east next year and a decent shot of these is definitely something i’m hoping for

  8. This was shot recently in what seems a bit of a ‘rare’ rainfall event these days ! So it was pouring rain and in the clouds and about 4C. So a bit cold after some recent temps around the 30C mark…But very moody 🙂

    Thanks again Flemming – just had to post some gum trees for you buddy !

    Cheers Tom – I’m glad you like it. I have seen some E.Paucilora in the Gramps in my time and trips there. Though I have yet to see any real spectacular gnarled old specimans there unfortunately.

    Thanks Stephen – I hope you get to see and photograph some good ones. I have slides from over the years of specimans that are orange-red amidst the snow…*very cool*

  9. Beautiful shots Tony. I really like the greens showing through. I look forward to the day I get to shoot in a similar environment.

  10. Thanks Luke ! Do you have any trip over to the east planned ?

  11. Not as yet Tony, but I hope to get over there again at some stage.

  12. My god Tony that banner shot is outstanding, that is the sort of stuff I want to get when I am in Darwin over Xmas this year, I love it.

  13. Nice update with the tighter composition. In this post I have the shot of the eucalyptus coccifera on Mt Wellington.

  14. and ditto on the banner, it’s nuts!

  15. Great shot tony, like luke said the green glowing from the trees look great….. nice job

  16. Casey – thanks and goodluck with the storms over the xmas break !

    Cain – thanks for re-visiting and with the link ! Did you happen to see or notice any old gnarled looking specimans ?

    Clint – thanks for stopping by, I’m glad you like it !


  17. nice shots mate love the trees got some real character to them

  18. Hi TOny,

    I love this shot. Well done, I like the others love the banner.

  19. Fantastic…. love the green and the mist. Beautiful combination.

  20. Jamie – thanks mate, glad you like them. 🙂

    Matt – thanks also, I like the combination as well. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: