Pinnaroo in the mallee of South Australia
I recently had occasion to visit the township of Pinnaroo in the mallee region of eastern South Australia. The main road by-passes most of the town, so visitors just passing through rarely get a chance to see much of this charming and thriving country town. On this occasion I had to deliver a parcel in the main street. It was the first time I could ever recall seeing more than just the outskirts of the town while driving through.
Pinnaroo is situated in the mallee regions of the state. Mallee is the generic name given to a wide range of eucalyptus trees common in the area. They are also found in other parts of SA, as well as large parts of Western Australia, Victoria and western NSW. Typical of the mallee tree are the multiple trunks stemming from a large root called a lignotuber. This is more commonly called a stump, and can range from the size of a football through to a wheelbarrow or even bigger in older trees. These stumps, when dry, are prized as fire wood for their dense wood and long burning qualities. Sadly, large areas of mallee scrub have been cleared and burnt over the last 175 years and only remnant patches still exist.
In the photo above is one such remnant patch of scrub – right in the heart of town which is unusual but commendable. Most of the surrounding district has been cleared for farming. A typical settler farmer’s cottage can be seen in the photo below. Click on the photo to enlarge the image, and to see the old farm equipment left to rust near the farmhouse.