If there is a forest fire in Southeastern Australia, do you know which native tree species are likely to survive? You can place your bet on a large tree with a straight trunk that has a covering of rough yet not stringy bark at the lower part. Interestingly, the bark becomes smoother and even halfway up. This tree grows to a height of 40 metres or higher. The girth of some trees measures up to three metres in diameter. Eucalyptus pilularis is not only important for koalas as a food source. It is also important to Australia’s building and construction industry.
A highly valued timber species
The popular name for Eucalyptus pilularis is ‘Blackbutt’, which is derived from the colour of the base of living trees of the species that survive bushfires. The shades of this type of wood range from yellowish to light brown colour. The hardwood species belongs to the Myrtaceae family. With a Janka hardness of 9.1 and an even grain, the demand for this timber species remains high. As such, numerous plantations are being maintained in Australia as well as other countries to ensure a continuous supply.
Advantages of Eucalyptus pilularis timber
Because of the growing interest for blackbutt flooring, Perth suppliers find themselves entertaining enquiries about its advantages over other hardwoods. First, the wood is very dense. It is a popular flooring material not only because of its density but also because of the even grain and texture. While trees that grow in the wild usually present with greater variety in colour and grain, plantation-grown trees are uniform in appearance. From the point of view of manufacturers, the timber is workable and machines well. In addition, despite potential issues with surface checking, the timber responds favourably to staining and polishing, Planet Timbers explains.
While chiefly popular as a flooring and decking material, Eucalyptus pilularis is a native Australian hardwood species that also finds good use in making bridge planks, weatherboards, railway sleepers, and in furniture-making. It is versatile, termite-resistant, and pleasing to look at.