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Yabba Flowers on West Derrier Creek, Imbil State Forest. Q

Yabba Flowers on a tributary of Yabba Creek

Kurrajong is an aboriginal name that was applied to a particular tree that grew on the slopes of the Blue Mountains west of Sydney, especially where there was more soil moisture, such as on the shales around the village that was given the name Kurrajong.

From the bark of the kurrajong, aboriginal women chewed the fibres to make string for weaving, and from its fibrous interior nets were made for fishing.

However the name has been applied by European Australians to the group of trees identified as Brachychiton. The distinctive Bottle Tree is one of this group. Brachychiton discolor (Lacebark) is a rainforest tree and though in open cultivation it will grow a conical form to about 10M, in the rainforest, in competition with other trees, it grows straight and tall to double this height.

Around Christmas time, it drops its flowers. Should they drop into a small creek, the colourful flowers will collect as garlands of beauty around the perimeter of the pool. On roadways they fall and scatter as a carpet of colour welcoming and honouring the visitor.

Brachychiton discolor was called Yabba by the aboriginal people on the Jimna and Conondale Ranges of SE Queensland. Alexander Swanson, a sheep grazier who settled on the Jimna Range in the 1850s, named his property "Yabba", so the river and waterfall near to his homestead became known as Yabba River (later Yabba Creek) and Yabba Falls, respectively.

This is a photograph of Yabba flowers on a small tributary of Yabba Creek. Here the generations of foresters who have managed the area, have safeguarded the ribbons of forest along the creek-ways, though the wider precinct has been clear-felled and used for plantations of Hoop Pine for softwood production.

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  • Uploaded on December 28, 2012
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Ian Stehbens