Friday, 4 May 2012

Satinay - the Builders Name?

Satinay, Turpentine or Syncarpia hillii.

Well, again we start with the reason for this article and it involves lunch with three other men, one a builder (the same one as the Jacaranda story), a boat builder, and the builders son. The talk got around to timber and carbon sequestration with trees - and I happened to mention Turpentine from Fraser Island! The reply was short and swift -

"Turpentine is the common name - not it's proper name - It's Fraser Island Satinay!"
I would like to mention prior to correcting the builder on his error - his knowledge of timber, history and the area of Fraser Island is second to none. Where did the name Central Station come from? Why is the current railway line the width it is? etc These are all questions I get asked regularly - so you can understand this reply!

Here's a few photos of the Satinay or Turpentine (both common names)

Satinay or Turpentine at Fraser Island

Syncarpia hilli flower! The Botanical name!

Central Station - ex logging camp - why the name?
So very quickly - the botanical name is Syncarpia hilli - just one of many species within the syncarpia genus! Syncarpia hillii is a tree of the Myrtaceae family which grows on Fraser Island, Queensland, and the surrounding Cooloola area. Common names for this species are Satinay and Fraser Island Turpentine.  Large examples of this tree may be seen growing at the 'Central Station' picnic area on Fraser Island.
The tree can grow to 40 metres tall and the trunk may reach over one metre in diameter.

It is valuable timber tree, particularly for marine pylons as it is totally resistant to marine borers . It is also fire and termite resistant. However, supply is limited. Satinay timber was used in the construction of the Suez Canal and London Docks. Resin from the sap has proven useful in treating chronic ulcers. There's another native to one of Queenslands islands that is also resistant to termites - whats's it's Botanical name?

If you require answers to the builders questions above? I have already suggested he writes his own BLOG site! And this also proves that men at lunch don't always discuss footy, the races and jokes! But that's another story!


  1. Where did the name Central Station come from?

    Ha Ha! I need to know now!

    I don't want to wait until this builder person sets up a BLOG!