Bunya Pine Tree

Bunya Pine Tree
Photo: Hugh Robertson

The prehistoric (Mesozoic 251 to 65 million years ago) Banya Pine – Araucaria bidwillii – can grow to over 45m (almost 150′) and around March they drop these huge Pine Cones… I mean really Huge, they are about the size of a person’s head (and probably have a higher IQ than some bushes). If you brake them apart you end up with about 50 or more very large pine nuts that when roasted and eaten have a very similar consistency and taste to chestnuts; only with a slight pine taste.

For the Australian aborigines they were an important and favoured seasonal food source, individual trees were protected, managed and they were often regarded the ‘property’ of individual families. I have two of these trees not 70 meters from my place and I often collect a few of the cones, extract the nuts, and roast them under my grille; the trick is to split the husk to prevent them from exploding.

These trees definitely look like prehistoric conifers, even if they weren’t, with their bizarre branches, leaves and bark you’d swear there were dinosaurs lurking near by… though I’m more nervous about one of the cones striking me from above since they must weigh close to 10 kilograms (20lbs).

Website: Bunya Feast

Destroying our environment

Destroy Environment
Photo: Solvo Inc

Some Governments and Businesses seem intent on destroying our environments all around the world. We as citizens of this world need to do something to stop this from happening.

Let’s look at a small scenario. I live on the edge of a small town on five acres. On the back half of our property we are allowing more native trees to grow and we are planting more rainforest trees as well. We basically want the 3 acres at the back to be a small forest. So this is good for the environment.

But how about around our house, there are a few trees that pose a danger if they were to fall due to a wind storm, so I would like to remove these trees, but the hoops that I would have to jump through just to get council approval to remove these trees is absolutely incredible. Many people in certain councils are in the same situation where they cannot remove certain trees because local councils don’t allow them or make it very hard for them.

BUT what about organisations such as GUNNS Logging Company in Tasmania, or other such companies have been given green lights, they are allowed to go and remove thousands of acres of old growth forest. This logging is going on all around the world. Millions of acres (or hectares) are being destroyed each and every year, and on the other hand a relatively small number of trees in comparison are not allowed to be removed even if they do pose a danger to people’s houses.

Where is the sense in this? There is no sense, it is Big Business and Government Greed.