The Botanical Gardens in Cairns are wonderfully lush and filled with exotic flora. As with most Botanical Gardens, the plants on hand are both indigenous and imported. While I had seen bottle trees, sausage trees, and monkey puzzle trees in other parts of Queensland, it was at the gardens in Cairns that I encountered my first cannonball tree.
The cannonball tree is a native of South America. It’s a softwood tree that produces large, woody fruit that looks very much like rusting cannonballs. It was not the most fabulously lush or beautiful thing I saw in the Cairns garden (and there was much that was lush and beautiful), but it was the oddest thing I saw there.