This section is from the book "A Research On The Eucalypts Especially In Regard To Their Essential Oils", by Richard T. Baker, Henry G. Smith. Also available from Amazon: A Research On The Eucalypts And Their Essential Oils.
(Sm., in Bot. Nov. Holl. 43, and in Trans. Linn. Soc, iii, 287.) Bloodwood.
Systematic. - A tree not easily confounded with other species. It grows very tall. Bark persistent, furrowed, of a reddish colour, fibrous, but not stringy in the sense of the "Stringybarks," as it can be removed in flakes. The tree exudes kino very abundantly, the whole stem being sometimes covered with this reddish blood-like substance, and hence its vernacular name. Leaves lanceolate, slightly falcate, varying in size up to 9 inches long and 2 inches broad, pale on the underside; lateral veins very fine, and very numerous, only slightly oblique ; intramarginal vein close to the edge. Oil dots not numerous. Peduncles many, mostly terminal, forming a large corymbose panicle. Buds nearly 1 inch long. Calyx conical, tapering into the pedicel; ovary flat-topped ; operculum hemispherical, shortly acuminate.
Fruit. - More or less urn-shaped; rim countersunk ; valves hidden below the base of the broad rim; 7 to 9 lines long, and 5 to 6 lines broad.
Morphologically the fruits are distinct from any other . species, the large reflected broad rim distinguishing it from its nearest congeners, E. intermedia and E. eximia.
Habitat.-Coast and Dividing Range of New South Wales; Queensland; just a few trees occurring in the Northeast corner of Victoria; North Australia.
REMARKS.-A common tree in the county of Cumberland, N.S.W., and appears never to have had but one common name, i.e., that of " Bloodwood." It attains a height of over 100 feet in favourable situations, but near the coast (La Perouse) it is stunted in growth. The timber has a deep red fleshy colour, is porous, has numerous gum veins, and is regarded, notwithstanding these latter, as very durable in the ground when split tangentially, or, as bushmen term it, " to the shoulder." The "Bloodwood " (E. intermedia), R.T.B., of the Clarence and Richmond Rivers and Cambewarra (W.B.), has in the past been confounded with this species. The two, however, are distinct as they differ in the shape of the fruits, bark, and timber. Both specimens are easy of determination. (Vide remarks under E. intermedia.)
ESSENTIAL OIL. - Leaves and terminal branchlets for distillation were obtained from Gosford, N.S.W., in November, 1896. The yield of oil was very small - 365 lb. of green material giving only 3 1/2 ounces of oil, equal to 0.06 per cent.
The crude oil was of a light lemon colour, and had a turpentine-like odour, with a secondary one distinctly aromatic. The oil consisted largely of pinene ; phellandrene could not be detected, and but a trace of cineol was present. Aromadendral was indicated by the second fraction having a higher rotation to the left than had the first fraction. The third fraction consisted largely of the sesquiterpene. Crystallised eudesmol was not found. The crude oil had specific gravity at 150 C. = 0.883; optical rotation aD - 8.4°; refractive index at 20° = 1.4838; and was not soluble in 10 volumes 80 per cent. alcohol..
A Typical Bloodwood Bark
In this group of trees the bark is rough, rigid, reddish in colour, friable, and "very" short in the fibre, with medium furrows.
The oils of Eucalypts with barks of this character all contain the terpene pinene as an important constituent. Cineol is usually almost absent. The " Bloodwoods " are chiefly found in the first group and apparently represent the oldest species of the genus.
Sections of the leaf taken in a similar position to that of the preceding, AngoPhora lanceolata. The Bloodwoods are perhaps the lowest yielders of an essential oil amongst Eucalypts, and so the oil glands are mostly wanting. It is worthy of note that the palisade layers are only developed on the upper surface, as in the Angophoras. This feature is characteristic of the leaves of the Blood wood Group. The wood fibres surrounding the mid-rib are a conspicuous feature, as well as the ducts in the bundle, and the equal development of the xylem. x 35.
On rectification the usual amount of acid water and volatile aldehydes came over below 1600 C. (corr.). Between 160-172°, 54 per cent. distilled; between 172-2450, 22 per cent. came over; and between 245-2700, 14 per cent. distilled. These fractions gave the following: -
First fraction, sp. gr. at 150 C.
light did not pass.
The saponification number lor the esters and tree acid was 3.8.
The differences in the characters shown by the oils of the three " Blood-woods "-E. corymbosa, E. intermedia, and E. eximia-are given in the following table: -
Specific Gravity at
15° C. Crude Oils.
Oil per cent.
Saponification Number for Esters and Free Acids.
E. corymbosa, Gosford November, 1896
E. intermedia, Lismore, October, 1900 ...
E. eximia, Springwood, August, 1899...