Native Apricot trees

A rather special tree of dry districts of South Australia is the Native Apricot or Pittosporum phylliraeoides. It is not a common tree, though in favoured areas can be plentiful. It also has a wide range and is not restricted to South Australia. It can be found in the remnant bushland near my home. I have seen it in dry creek beds in Woomera which surprised me greatly, as vast gibber plains of rock and dust with an annual rainfall of 250mm don't seem appropriate for such a delicate looking tree. The following pictures were taken just east of Kadina on a late autumn trip to the Copper Triangle. The tree's were laden with their woody 'fruits' which stood out like beacons to me as I am always scanning the roadsides for interesting vegetation. Most of the Native Apricot tree's that I have come across have been fairly young and upright with smooth bark. Outside Kadina I spied some that had attained a reasonable height, (10 metres), and whose leaf stems were quite pendulous, not dissimilar to a Willow. The boles of these tree's were scaly and the fruit larger than I had seen before, (20mm). I had to stop and film them. Since 1996 I have been training one of these trees as a Bonsai. I bought it as tube stock and planted it in my garden. After a couple of years of growth it had taken on a contorted shape, thickened up a little but not grown much in height. I didn't think it had survived the transplant but after losing all its leaves and shrinking to a mere stick, it miraculously sprang back to life and has done well ever since.

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