Kingaroy’s CBD could be a colourful mix of green and red every summer if the Council adopts a suggestion to plant Firewheel trees rather than Silky Oaks at most of the CBD’s intersections (Photo: SBRC)

October 5, 2021

South Burnett Regional Council will debate adding a new type of tree to Kingaroy’s streetscape at its next meeting on Wednesday.

In response to frequent complaints about deciduous trees in the CBD, the Council initially planned to reline the streets with Silky Oaks as part of the Kingaroy Transformation Project.

The Silky Oaks – eight in total – would be located on almost all intersections within the KTP footprint.

However, officers reported this decision had prompted “mixed feedback from the community” – largely about the trees dripping nectar in season, and their capacity to grow large root systems unless restrained.

This had led the SBRC’s landscape architect, design team and parks team to suggest Firewheel trees (Stenocarpus sinuatus) as an alternative.

Firewheel trees are Australian natives and typically grow in semi-tropical areas from northern NSW to Far North Queensland.

They are non-deciduous evergreens that can grow from 10m to 30m in height, producing red/orange wheel-shaped flowers in summer.

They are also resistant to light frosts, and can do well in drier environments if irrigated.

If they are tip-pruned, they can also be trained to grow into a dense, rounded shape.

Councillors will decide whether to adopt the officers’ Firewheel trees suggestion and, if they do, to replace some or all the planned Silky Oaks with them.

Footnote: At the meeting, Councillors voted to use Firewheel trees in conjunction with Silky Oaks for the KTP project. They also voted that a Silky Oak at the corner of Youngman and Alford Streets should be relocated to Memorial Park.


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