THE first Bishop of the Wagga Wagga Diocese, Joseph Dwyer, was, from his school days, a keen student of Australian flora.
He was well-respected not only for his professional calling as a pastor, but also in the scientific community as a talented amateur botanist.
The red gum, Eucalyptus dwyeri, which he was the first to identify, was named for him.
During his time as Parish Priest of Temora (1912-1916), Fr Dwyer collected plants in an area between 10 and 15 miles wide on either side of the railway line between Wyalong and Stockinbingal.
Fr James McGee, a retired priest of Wagga Wagga, collected seeds from the small grove of Eucalyptus dwyeri that was planted some years ago at Vianney College Seminary.
Fr McGee supervised the germination of these seeds and is now growing them as tube stock.
These commemorative saplings will be sold as part of the centenary celebrations.
- This story was first published in Wagga Diocese’s “Together” magazine