Giants of the Styx valley
by Marcelo de Almeida
(Petropolis,Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Ever since I was a child, living in the mountains of southern California amongst tall pines, I´ve known about the Eucalyptus Regnans and Eucalyptus Globulus trees.
California has more than its fair share of Eucalyptus Globulus trees. They have naturalized very well in an area where native trees could only have dreamed of - not only surviving, but also thriving - for example on the Big Sur ocean cliffs, where salty winds rule.
When my parents took me to see first the giant sequoias, and then the redwoods, I wondered what it might have been like to see those valiant blue gums, which I imagined are as big and tall as the sequoias.
I am aware of the environmental disrespect for the swamp gums of Tasmania. I am afraid of arriving too late to see the last of these big trees before there are non left.
I am also impressed by what I have heard - that Eucalyptus Regnans trees (which I always knew as Mountain Ash trees) can attain an enormous height and size in a fraction of the time a sequoia would take.
If I lived in the right climate, I would certainly plant both Eucalyptus Regnans trees and sequoias.
I hope more people are thinking along the same lines, and I hope legislation can preserve these giants for the future so they will be there for us to continue visiting.
Good luck Tasmania. If I can, I most certainly will visit your giants in the Styx river valley, even if I only get one day.
Thank you for this opportunity.
Just for the information of site visitors, Eucalyptus Regnans trees are also known as Swamp Gums and Eucalyptus Globulus trees are also known as Southern Blue Gums (according to the Australian government backed Eucalypts of Australia website)
A day visiting those wonderful giant eucalypts of the Styx valley - that would be a day very well spent indeed. I do share your hope that we can save these unique natural treasures of the Styx river valley.
At the Parks and Wildlife Tasmania website, I read the following about the Tall Trees walk at Mt Field National Park:
"The swamp gum, Eucalyptus regnans, is the tallest flowering plant on Earth. The Tall Trees circuit takes you through a spectacular forest of these giants, the largest of which were growing when Abel Tasman first sighted Tasmania in 1642, and which are taller than the Wrest Point Casino in Hobart."