01 September 2011

Storm strips jacarandas bare at Goodna

 AS IF the floods weren't damaging enough, storms have wreaked havoc on Goodna's iconic jacaranda trees.

A storm yesterday has left Goodna's jacaranda trees without their flowers, leaving doubt as to whether they will form their usual colourful backdrop (right) as this year's Jacaranda Festival.

AS IF the floods weren't damaging enough, storms have wreaked havoc on Goodna's iconic jacaranda trees.

Ipswich councillor Paul Tully said the trees had been stripped of their new foliage, raising concerns that the upcoming annual Jacaranda Festival in October might be a flowerless event.

Cr Tully said many of the trees had lost their pre-spring leaves in less than 15 minutes at the height of the storm on Tuesday afternoon.

But with the Jacaranda Festival set to be the first one after January's devastating flood disaster, Cr Tully said he was hoping a sea of purple foliage would bloom in time for the event.

"This year's festival was due to be the biggest and brightest ever as the suburb slowly gets back to normality after January's flood," Cr Tully said.

"I am quietly confident with the start of spring tomorrow that these trees, which will be 80 years old next year, will survive and produce an abundance of purple flowers.

"The storm may have hit the trees but the Goodna community will bounce back and hopefully the annual purple haze will grace the streets of Goodna again this year.

"We have two months for them to get going. A lot can happen in two months."

He said the avenue of trees on Brisbane Terrace was planted by work gangs in 1932 during the Great Depression and have survived the floods of 1955, 1974 and 2011.

Until Tuesday's storm, Cr Tully said they were shaping up well for the festival.

"Some of them still have a bit of vegetation. Up until the storm, I thought it would be an early flowering," he said.

"Some died in the floods, some of the ones on Woogaroo St, but they weren't as big as the ones on Brisbane Terrace."

The wet weather is expected to continue for a while yet, with predictions of above average rainfall this spring in Queensland.

The Weather Channel's chief meteorologist, Dick Whitaker, said he expected near average temperatures to continue through spring but above average rainfall should return to most of Queensland.

And according to the Bureau of Meteorology, Ipswich can expect more rain this week with days of showers expected.

Today is expected to be fine but a shower of two is expected ever day until Tuesday at the very least.

The 2011 Jacaranda Festival will be held at Evan Marginson Park, Goodna, from October 28-30.

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