You are here

Home > About > News and media releases > Monster pine cones harvested at Werribee

News

Monster pine cones harvested at Werribee

Wednesday 19 March, 2014

Visitors strolling through Werribee Parks Gardens are now much less likely to be hit by a pinecone falling from one of the twelve Bunya Bunya Pine trees growing there.

Park Horticultural staff and intern students took to the skies in a cherry picker to remove the huge cones which can weigh up to 12kg.

“Unlike a lot of other pine cones these fall to ground intact, and being around the size of a pineapple, they can do quite a lot of damage if they land on someone’s head,” says Senior Horticulturalist Adam Smith.

“These Jurassic looking heritage trees are very old and huge, so we needed to go about 45metres vertically upwards to collect around a hundred cones. The biggest challenge for us was how to remove them safely in windy conditions at such a great height."

Bunya pines usually drop their cones around this time of year as they reach maturity, so part of the park’s tree management program is to harvest them every two years so that staff, visitors and vehicles are not damaged by these falling missiles.

Bunya Bunya's are one of the largest cone bearing trees in the world, and two of the Werribee Park trees are listed on the National Trust’s Significant Tree register.

Despite being natural bombshells, the cones are actually soft-shelled and each contains about 80 large, nutritious nuts which are a traditional food of Indigenous Australians. They can be eaten raw or cooked, and also ground into a paste to make a kind of bread when cooked in hot coals.

However these Werribee Park seeds won’t be eaten, but rather kept and propagated by Horticultural students in the Parks Heritage Sunken Glasshouse.



Media enquiries

Sally Nowlan
0417391175

Parks Victoria media centre

Recent Stories

Go hug a giant for National Tree Day

Thursday 28 July, 2016
This Sunday 31 July is National Tree Day. What better time to go and connect with some of our biggest…

Diversity Discovered on the Stawell’s Doorstep

Wednesday 27 July, 2016
An amazing number of native birds and animals have been discovered right on the edge of Stawell in Western Victoria,…

Wilsons Prom to close for maintenance works

Wednesday 27 July, 2016
Wilsons Promontory National Park will be closed on Tuesday 23 August and reopened on the morning of Friday 26 August…

Coolart Bush Kinder and its Kids Continue to Thrive

Monday 25 July, 2016
Five years after it started, the Bush Kinder program at Coolart Homestead continues to be a great success, thanks to…

Seismic shift - investigations for better visitor views

Monday 25 July, 2016
Visitors to the Twelve Apostles will see geotechnical scientists working in the area this week as part of the Victorian…

Get Planting on National Tree Day at The Prom

Friday 22 July, 2016
Parks Victoria and Friends of the Prom are celebrating this year’s National Tree Day on Sunday 31 July with a…

View all media releases