A lone marri tree grows on the side of the track in banksia jarrah woodland with a dead jarrah tree behind the marker. Look out for Dwarf Wedding Bush, a shrub with masses of white flowers in early spring.
Winter – Menzies Banksia, Running Postman
Spring – Dwarf Wedding Bush (Ricinocarpos undulatus), Milkmaids
Late Spring & Early Summer – Fragrant Waitzia (Waitzia suaveolens), Autumn Lily (Tricoryne elatior), Waldjumi (Jacksonia sericea), Native Flax, Candle Banksia, Jarrah, Marri, Fringe Lily (Thysanotus arenarius)
Focus Topic 17. Marri Trees
Marri trees Corymbia calophylla) are only found in a few small stands in Warwick Bushland. This species prefers wetter, more fertile soils than Jarrah. Some marri trees have been planted elsewhere in the Jarrah-Banksia woodland.
Marri belongs to the genus Corymbia, which differs from gum trees in the genus Eucalyptus due to flower arrangement in large clusters called corymbs and leaves that are borne in pairs and are relatively stiff. In contrast Eucalyptus leaves grow alternately along stems and typically hang down. Marri trees also have characteristic scaly bark which contrasts with the stringy bark of jarrah and smoother scaly bark of tuart. They also have red gum exuding from damaged trunks and very large woody fruit and seed relative to most other gum trees.
These large seeds of Marri trees are a very important food for parrots such as ringnecks and red-tailed black cockatoos. The latter leave characteristic damage to gumnuts and heavily prune trees where they are feeding (Focus Topic 10).
Focus Topic 18. Erupting Dye-ball Fungus
Watch where you step! The Dye-ball (or dog poo) fungus (Pisolithus sp.) has pushed up through the bitumen leaving prominent bumps or divots in tracks. The Dye-ball fungus is very unusual because it prefers to fruit in compacted soil and is most common in disturbed habitats. In some cases, fungal eruptions line up across tracks because they are in association with the same tree root. Growing fruit bodies (or sporocarps) of fungi can exert sufficient pressure to erupt through paving due to the high liquid pressure within their mycelia (osmotic water potential). This is equivalent to the hydraulic force which powers earth moving equipment.
This fungus is a mutualistic mycorrhizal associate that primarily occurs with Eucalyptus trees. Most plants have mycorrhizal associations with specialised fungi that associate with their roots. This includes 80% of WA plants. These mutualistic associations have essential roles in the ecosystem, especially in Western Australia where soils are often extremely infertile. In exchange for accessing soil nutrients, mycorrhizal fungi are sustained by plants in a two-way exchange process.
Friends of Warwick Bushland
Thank you to the long commitment and continued work of Mark Brundrett and Karen Clarke to produce the text and images for this website. We couldn’t have done it without you.
Acknowledgment of Country
We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of this land, the Wadjuk (Perth region) people of the Nyoongar nation. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging.