Blue gum tree appearance wood uses and lumber
Blue gum trees are native to South Australia and common in states like Tasmania, Victoria and New South Wales. The scientific name of blue gum is eucalyptus globulus and is part of the mytaceae family. Blue gum is famous and loved for its wind and sound break capabilities by both men and animal. This vigorous large tree forms dense thickets and today far outside Australia in many parts of the world. Blue gum wood is excellent firewood it has a bright flame and leaves little ash.
Blue gum tree, leaf and flower description
The blue gum tree can grow to heights up to 230 feet or 70 meters. The tree is classed evergreen and has leaves all year. Blue gum leaves have a lifespan of a few months depending on weather conditions. Old leaves will be replaced and this way the tree stays evergreen all year.
Blue gum leaves are arranged alternate and sickle shaped. New leaves are silvery blue gray colored and turn to dark green when aging. Mature leaves can reach lengths up to 12 inches or 30 cm.
Blue gum trees have very nice white looking flowers that hang in pairs on long strings. The flowers contain a great amount of nectar and play a vital role in the production of honey.
Blue gum tree bark and trunk
Blue gum trees have a rough green grey to reddish bark. Old bark will form long peeling ribbons that hang from the trunk and branches. This is a distinctive characteristic of many eucalyptus tree species. Blue gum is fast growing and the trunk can extend 35 meters in 30 years. The diameter of the trunk depends on the age of the tree. Older trees can have trunks with a diameter up to 6.5 feet or 2 meters.
Blue gum wood properties and durability
Fresh blue gum heartwood has a light yellow to brown color. The sapwood is much lighter but exposure to sunlight gives it a darker color, more in line with the heartwood. Blue gum wood has a medium to coarse texture, heavy, moderate strength and shock resistance properties. The average dried weight of the wood at a moisture content of 12% is 900 kg per cubic meter. The durability of blue gum wood is classed as III moderate durability.
Blue gum wood working tips and uses
Blue gum wood nails, screws, glues, and works well both by hand or machine. Pre drilling is advised when screws or nails are used. When working with wood type it is recommended to let it acclimatize to the environment.
Fresh wood can shrink when drying and case internal bending stresses. This can result in wrapping and bending or visible cracks. Blue gum wood is used in a wide range of products like
- fence posts
- turned articles
- and more!