Massive tree branches out on register

DEREK McIntosh loves trees – and he’s mightily impressed by an offering at Moonan Brook.

IMPRESSIVE: Greta’s Don Cruickshanks with the big tree he spotted at Moonan Brook during a recent trip to the Upper Hunter.

IMPRESSIVE: Greta’s Don Cruickshanks with the big tree he spotted at Moonan Brook during a recent trip to the Upper Hunter.

The National Register of Big Trees coordinator recently received correspondence from Greta’s Don Cruickshanks, who photographed an imposing Manna/Ribbon Gum during a recent trip to the Upper Hunter.

He was so astounded by the rare “find”, Mr McIntosh went to see the tree for himself while travelling to Ellerston for the polo.

“Don informed me it had been recognised as the biggest tree in this part of the Hunter Valley,” he said.

“Apparently, years back, the top was severely damaged but has grown back very well. 

“The tree is on a rich alluvial flat, with access to an underground stream, the old course of the Moonan Brook, and this has resulted in its enormous size.

“Don’s been one of the register’s most successful contributors over the past seven years.

“He is a retired cow-cocky and still a famous orchid breeder.

“He’s a life-long lover of trees and, when he finally found the register, he was able to convert this passion into a quest for finding Champion Trees.

“So far, Don’s nominated 29 trees and, of these, 14 are National Champions.”

Mr McIntosh said Moonan Brook residents should be proud of their eucalyptus viminalis.

“Don’s most recent nomination is the widely-growing largest Manna/Ribbon Gum – at 11.6m circumference, 30m high, 586 points,” he explained.

So far, Don’s nominated 29 trees and, of these, 14 are National Champions. - Derek McIntosh

“But, it’s not quite the National Champion, which is in Tasmania – 11m circumference, 91m high, 748 points.

“There are 746 trees on the register now.

“And, somewhere in your region, the National Champion Snow Gum is lurking.

“Hopefully, a reader could find it.”

Last year, a Turkey Oak that stands large and tall in the Murrurundi Public School was entered into the National Register of Big Trees.

It boasted a circumference of 4.95m, a height of 21m and crown of 23m.

The link to the Moonan Brook tree is: http://www.nationalregisterofbigtrees.com.au/listing_view.php?listing_id=1091

To check out all the champion big trees in Australia, visit http://www.nationalregisterofbigtrees.com.au/

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