Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Boab Tree, WA

Boab trees grow in Northern Australia mainly in the Kimberley Region usually having a bottled shaped trunk.

Notes taken from Wikipedia.
Adansonia gregorri, commonly known as the boab, is a tree in the family Malvaceae.  As with other baobabs, it is easily recognised by the swollen base of it's trunk, which forms a massive caudes, giving the tree a bottle like appearance.  Endemic to Australia, boab occur in the Kimberley region of Western Australia (WA), and east into the Northern Territory (NT).  It is the only baobab to occur in Australia, the others being native to Madagascar (six species) and mainland Africa and the Arabian Peninsula (two species). Boab ranges from 5 to 15 meters in height, usually between 9 and 12 meters, with a broad bottle shaped trunk.  It's trunk base may be extremely large, trunks with a diameter of over five metres have been recorded.  A. gregorii is deciduous, losing it's leaves during the dry winter period and producing new leaves and large white flowers between December and May.

The Boab Prison Tree, Derby WA, is a large hollow Adansonia gregorii (Boab) tree just shouth of Derby, WA.  It's reputed to have been used in the 1890's as a lockup for indigenous Australian prisoners on their way to Derby for sentencing.  It is now a tourist attraction.

In fact, there is no evidence that the Derby Prison Tree was ever used for holding prisoners.

The photo was taken on the way to Broome,WA

39 comments:

  1. wow fantastic and impressive tree.Is the tree in the background boab too,?

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  2. Such an odd shaped trunk! Almost like I a slightly obese tree! Strangely beautiful.

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    1. That's the shape they are Craig, all of them.
      There are sketched cards one can purchase at a shop or two up the 'Top End' with the branches cuddling each tree, scary looking branches...the boab nuts when dry fall off usually, and the indigenous people crave Australian animals, trees and so on. The nut is furry to feel.

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    1. The particular tree shown is not the prison tree, I do have a photo of that one at home. This is our 3rd trip to the 'Top End' so I didn't take a photo of it. The tree shown is same as a prison tree..

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  4. Such a strange tree, and what a lovely photo. Any idea how old it is?

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    1. These boab trees are very distinctive tree, there are many scattered about in the bush, on the side of the road. Have no idea how old it is..

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  5. such neat proof Mother Nature has a glorious imagination for fitting niches.

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    1. Nature at its best...always something to help someone.

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  6. They are incredible trees aren't they?
    I suspect that they were used as prisons, despite the lack of evidence...

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    1. I guess they were. Have a feeling they were used for shelter also, for anyone way back then.

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  7. They are strange trees. I've never seen one as fat as this old fellah.

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    1. Strange to us because we are not used to seeing them everyday. Some are bigger in the middle Andrew.

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  8. I also think that they could have been used as prisons way back.
    Tree trunks around the Burra area of SA were used by the miners to live in.
    These trees certainly stand out from the mulga in the background
    and by God how barren the ground is - the rainy season better commence
    soon.
    Colin

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    1. A further interesting aspect of these baoh trees is that some of the outback variety
      store water in that bulge trunk. Aboriginals were sustained with the aid of these trees
      in drought periods and blacktracker/guides were able to keep early explorers alive with
      this knowledge.
      Various species of this tree are found in botanical parks in cities, so how Australians have
      never seen them is a mystery to me. Some very fat trunked varieties are here in Anzac
      Park Square - slap bang right in the middle of Brisbane.
      Good informative report, Margaret.
      Colin

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    2. Thanks.
      You are correct about some varieties storing water.
      I didn't see any boab trees until the top end....well any that I took notice of.

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  9. Oh yes, the distinctive boab trees - there are a few children's stories written about these trees. Their shape inspires much storytelling.

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    1. That's true. Artists put faces on their illustrations, they do look good.

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  10. I never seen one only pictures but they are very interesting trees.
    Merle................

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    1. I hadn't seen any either until our first visit up north..the limbs are very interesting the way they grow, they grow all ways and you could imagine them being in a horror movie..

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    1. They are indeed. There is a small area here in Broome that has the boab growing up both sides of the busy street.

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    1. That's true. Was difficult to find a boab growing on its own without other vegetation.

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    1. They are Jo-Anne, but you get used to looking at them...will miss them when we go south.

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  14. Very unusual, Angel, and thanks so much for sharing the picture. It is truly amazing.

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  15. I recall seeing boab trees in books when I was a child and they must have made an impact on my eye as I can recall them still. You are getting to see lots of very memorable sights on your travels through Australia Margaret.

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    1. The boab is a very different tree so therefor it stays in our minds if seen before.
      Seeing many things as we travel..

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  16. Replies
    1. It certainly looks old, but I have taken photos of older looking ones..

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