Marri is a large tree which can grow to over 30 m. It is common on the coastal plain, on the Darling Range and in the Southwest. Species in the Corymbia genus are commonly known as “bloodwoods” because of the dark red gum they bleed. Leaves are dark green above and pale below, and their veins are at 50-70 degrees to the midrib. Flowers are produced from mid summer to late autumn and are displayed outside the foliage. Marri nectar makes excellent honey.
The fruits are large and urn-shaped, and known colloquially as “honkey nuts”. Scouts hollow them out and use them as “woggles” for securing their scarves. They were the inspiration for children’s author May Gibbs’ “gumnut babies”, Snugglepot and Cuddlepie.
Ref: “Leaf and branch: trees and tall shrubs of Perth” by Robert Powell. Published by the Western Australian Department of Environment and Conservation, 2009.
Ref: “Pathway to magic: the story of May Gibbs in Western Australia” by Jean Lang. Published by Challenge Bank Ltd, Perth, 1991.