Queensland Kauri (Agathis robusta) is a gorgeous, coniferous, evergreen tree, and can grow hugely. A member of the ancient Araucariaceae family, it is one of only 21 in its genus. Fashionable in Victorian times, it was often planted as far south as Melbourne in large and institutional gardens.
Living as I did not long ago in Hawthorn close to the Yarra River, I'd often walk with my then dog, 'Ulysses', past Glenferrie Primary School in Manningtree Road. At its entrance stands a slender Kauri, probably planted when the school was built in the 1870s. ( The above photograph is gratefully purloined from the school's website.)
Any number of times I planted seeds from this and other Kauris in the hope of getting one up and going. The specimen above was planted as a seed on the 15th of March, 2002, and sat for a number of years, until it got to be tough enough, on the ledge of my bathroom window.
As soon as it starts to get warm in spring, the tree unfurls its delicate, new, coppery growth, like sea-weed. You can also see the older, leathery leaves, with their hint of a prehistoric past.
Climbing a tilted ladder this morning, dew still on the leaves of the tree, I was hoping to get high enough to take some shots looking down from its apex, but common sense intervened.
I'm proud of this beautiful, 3 metre tree, and hope that it will one day be vast, a reminder of the ancient lineage of our green world, and a pointer towards a more verdant future.