Monday, 13 April 2009

"Black Boys" - Grass Trees of Australia

“Black Boy” Grass Trees only grow in Australia.
These remarkable plants have a lifespan of 600 years but are very slow-growing. The trunk takes about 10 years to form and is composed of a mass of old leaf bases held together by a natural resin. It is then a further 20 years or more before the mass of thin, grassy leaves form on top. From then on, it grows only about 1-2cm in height per year.
This plant grows to a height of over 4 metres and often has branches. Its growth rate is only about 1 metre every 100 years. However, the flowering stalk grows at a rate of 2 – 3 cm per day reaching to a height of over 3 metres.
The Grass Tree attracts a wide range of lizards and insects that shelter in the plant’s massive foliage. The flowering spear of the plant attracts honey eating birds, bees, ants, and butterflies.
Photo by Kaye

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