Araucaria araucana, or monkey puzzle tree, is native to the south-central Andes of Chile and Argentina. The leaves of this confer are thick and appear as triangular scales encircling the tentacle like branch, the pattern similar in structure to a pine cone. While the leaves last on average 24 years, the tree can live as long as 1000 years.
Its English name was derived during its early cultivation in Britain in the mid-1800s. While visiting an estate in Cornwall, a lawyer noted his friend’s specimen tree “would puzzle a monkey to climb that”.
The round globes are the female cones. Indigenous people in Chile and Argentina continue to harvest the edible seeds. Our Airbnb in Portland was named after this specimen. I am impressed on how striking this tree works as a monochrome composition.
Thanks for stopping by today. To appreciate the character of this tree, click on an image to view a high resolution version.