Marri / Red Gum (Corymbia calophylla)

Marri is a large tree, which can grow to over 30 m. It is common on the coastal plain, Darling Range and in the Southwest. It belongs to the “bloodwood” genus, so named because of the dark red gum it bleeds.

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 uniform scarves.  They were the inspiration for childrens’ 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.