Beautiful Sunday: A Living Rainbow

Whoa! Check out this tree!

Yes, those colors are natural. That’s the Rainbow Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus deglupta), the only Eucalyptus species found naturally in the Northern Hemisphere — well, barely northern. The tree is native to the tropics of Australia and some islands of Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and the Philippines. It is farmed as a pulpwood throughout the Phillipines.  In North America, it has been successfully cultivated as an ornamental tree in humid tropical areas such as Hawaii and southern Florida, Texas, and California.

Why is it so colorful? It has a thin bark that peels off in layers, then …

As the newly exposed bark slowly ages, it changes from bright green to a darker green, then bluish to purplish, and then pink-orange. Finally, the color becomes a brownish maroon right before exfoliation occurs. Since this process is happening in different zones of the trunk and in different stages, simultaneously, the colors are varied and almost constantly changing. As a result, the tree will never have the same color pattern twice, making it like a work of living art.  — LariAnn Garner, “Under the Rainbow” in Ornamental Outlook, Sep 2006 (pdf)

A million pretty pictures to make your eyes happy.

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