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Monkey Puzzle tree

Araucaria araucana


The national tree of Chile, is an evergreen tree growing to 40 metres (130 ft) tall with a 2 metres (7 ft) trunk diameter. The tree is native to central and southern Chile and western Argentina. Araucaria araucana is the hardiest species in the conifer genus Araucaria. Because of the species's great age it is sometimes described as a living fossil.


Its native habitat is the lower slopes of the Chilean and Argentinian south-central Andes, typically above 1,000 metres (3,300 ft). Juvenile trees exhibit a broadly pyramidal or conical habit which naturally develops into the distinctive umbrella form of mature specimens as the tree ages. It prefers well drained, slightly acidic, volcanic soil but will tolerate almost any soil type provided it drains well.

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Melipeuco, IX Región de la Araucanía, Chile

Spotted on Jan 9, 2011
Submitted on Jul 9, 2012

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