Melbourne is all about trees! They’re an essential part of the city’s history and character. They’ve made Melbourne the green oasis it is, with places like the Snowy River Estuary, Cumberland, Glen Nayook rainforest, and more.

But there are a few trees in particular that have a special place in Melbourne’s heart. These bad boys have been around for ages, witnessing the city’s growth and changes. Let’s take a look at the top five historic trees in Melbourne:

1. The Old Auracaria Bidwillii (aka Old Bunya Bunya Pine)

This legendary pine tree has been standing tall for a whopping 140 years! It was planted way back in 1879 by Lady Bowen in Melbourne Gardens. This old fella is a true icon, with its bushy leaves looking as fresh as ever. It’s one of Melbourne’s protected trees, so make sure to give it the respect it deserves when you visit the gardens.

2. The Separation Tree

Once upon a time, this tree was the bee’s knees in Melbourne. Unfortunately, vandals did it dirty, ringbarking it and bringing an end to its over four centuries of life. But fear not, you can still catch a glimpse of its saplings in Melbourne’s botanical gardens. This historical gem belonged to the Eucalyptus camaldulensis fam, known as the red river gum.

3. The Lions Head Tree (aka Cockatoo Tree)

Get a load of this beaut! The Lions Head Tree can be found chillin’ in Melbourne and Cranbourne Gardens. It’s got a gnarly lump on its trunk that looks just like a lion’s head. This old timer has been hanging around for over a century, maybe even longer than Melbourne itself. In 2019, it got a makeover to fix up its trunk, and now it stands tall in all its glory.

4. The 281 Elms

You won’t believe this, but there’s a whole gang of trees known as the 281 Elms. These legends line Bacchus Marsh Avenue, about 50km northwest of Melbourne. They were planted in 1918 to honor the locals who fought in World War I. These beauties won the 2020 Victorian Tree of the Year award, mate! They’ve faced some road development challenges, but they’re still there, reminding us of their historical significance.

5. The Chinese Honey Locust of Melbourne

This tree is a real gem in Melbourne, mainly because it’s the only known mature specimen of its kind in the city. You can spot it at the intersection of King and Bourke. It goes by the name Gleditsia sinensis and has been rockin’ it since the 1830s. Talk about a living piece of history!

These historic trees are the true legends of Melbourne. They’ve witnessed it all and remind us of the city’s roots. So next time you’re strolling through Melbourne, make sure to give these old mates a nod and show some love for the green giants that make the city shine!