Australian natives- Kurrajong tree

I know the Kurrajong (Brachychiton populneus) as a tree that will grow almost anywhere, great for shade and great to cut down the foliage/limbs for cattle feed in a drought. They have become popular as garden specimen trees because they are hardy and horticulturists have hybridised this tree to produce stunning new varieties. This tree has also been introduced into other countries, so you may be familiar.

Turns out our First Nations people were on to the other uses of this tree thousands of years ago. The seeds are very nutritious, about 18%protein and 25% fat, with a high content of zinc and magnesium. There are tiny irritating hairs in the seed pod around the seeds that have to be removed. After that though they can be eaten raw or roasted with a pleasant nutty flavour. Other uses, water could be obtained from the roots by boring a hole and squeezing. The soft spongy wood was used for making shields and the bark as a fibre for twine or fishing lines.

I thought I might post 1 or 2 different Australian native plants each week. It could be interesting for others on the forum + I’m learning heaps as well.


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