Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)

Norfolk Island Pine is a special case of ornamental tree. An extremely popular conifer, which has been fully adapted to several subtropical regions of the planet, where in some of them are now volunteer, has come to the point that it is in danger of extinction from its native land.

As for the place, the following article will be mentioned it.

As for the reason why, we estimate that there would not be enough even 34.6 square kilometers of articles – as many as about the square kilometers of his native place.

And in the case of Norfolk Island Pine, the human species tries in every way to prove that it really has an extraterrestrial origin.

CONTENTS

Norfolk Island Pine, Leaf of Tree - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler
Norfolk Island Pine, Leaf of Tree - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler
Norfolk Island Pine Origin

Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)

Norfolk Island Pine, the Tree - New Zealand
Norfolk Island Pine, the Tree - New Zealand
Norfolk Island Pine, the Cone of the Plant - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler
Norfolk Island Pine, the Cone of the Plant - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler
Norfolk Island Pine, Trunk & Tree Bark - © Joseph LaForest, University of Georgia, Bugwood.org
Norfolk Island Pine, Trunk & Tree Bark - © Joseph LaForest, University of Georgia, Bugwood.org

Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla) - Brief Description

Scientific name

Araucaria heterophylla (Salisb.) Franco (syn. Araucaria excelsa)

 Common name

Polynesian pine, Living Christmas tree, Triangle tree, Star pine, Christmas Plant, House pine

 

General characteristics

Type of foliage: Evergreen

Form: Large conifer tree, with pyramidal to columnar symmetrical canopy

Texture: Fine

Height: 18-25 m (60-80 ft)

Diameter: 4-6 m (12-20 ft)

Growth rate: Fast

 

Shape and colours

Bark: Gray-brown

Leaves shape: Needle-like, linear

Foliage colour: Green

Foliage colour in autumn: Green

Cones shape: Male, elongated cone in clusters / Female – broad cone

Cones colour: Light-brownish green

 

Plantation

Soil type: Draining, sand, clay, loam, acidic to light acidic

Exposure: Sun

Soil pH: 5.5-6.5

Watering: Medium

Hardiness: −1 °C (30 °F – USDA Hardiness zone 10a)

 

Uses

Specimen, hedges, windbreaks, indoor

Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)

Norfolk Island Pine, Tree Flowers - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler
Norfolk Island Pine, Tree Flowers - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler

Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla) - General Notes

  1. Some believe that the scientific language is dry and rigorous, lacking any poeticity. On the occasion of investigating the origin of the name Araucaria heterophylla, we will try to reverse this claim. So we start with the word Araucaria. Araucaria, the name of the genus, is a New Latin word, composed of ‘Arauco’ and ‘aria’. The first one has a little to very adventurous origin: it comes from the word ‘Arauco’ of Mapuche people, native to present-day in Chile and Argentina, and means chalky water’. The area in Chile inhabited by Mapuche, the Spanish colonists called it Araucania, and botanists, since the genus numbered a few endemic species there, used it appropriately. The second word, the aria, has a less adventurous origin: it is of Italian origin and is a suffix of the Latin ‘āerem’, which derives from the ancient Greek word ‘ἀήρ’ which means ‘air’. It is now easy to understand that Araucaria means ‘air of chalky water’ or ‘alkaline aerated water’.

… Are there still those who consider that the scientific language is rigorous, lacking any poeticity, even if in fact the ‘-aria’ suffix only means that something ‘belongs to’ and merely contributes to the production of the New Latin composite word?

  1. And if they still exist and persist, let’s learn the origin of ‘heterophylla’, or change their minds: it is also a compound word, composed of the ancient ‘έτερον’ and ‘φύλλον’, meaning ‘different leaves’, describing the heteromorphy observed between the young and mature leaves of the same tree.

… How many more images can fit in a single word?

Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)

Norfolk Island Pine, Developed Tree - © Thomas Smiley, Bartlett Tree Experts, Bugwood.org
Norfolk Island Pine, Developed Tree - © Thomas Smiley, Bartlett Tree Experts, Bugwood.org
Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla) - Additional Informations
  1. After the above extremely poetics, it can be plainly said that Norfolk Island Pine has nothing to do with the Latin American continent. Instead, it comes from a cluster of three small islands, located near Australia, Norfolk, Nepean and Phillip Islands. And despite the significant extensive global distribution it has known as an ornamental plant, it has to be said that the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimates that the species has a high risk of extinction in its native land.
  2. Norfolk Island Pine is a large, impressive, evergreen coniferous tree, which can reach a height of even 50 to 70 m (165-230 ft). It is extremely long-lived, lives over 150 years, and the oldest of its species, about 170 years old, is located in the Norfolk Island National Park.
  3. Its cultivation is easy. However, in relation to the planting zone, it is recommended to plant in areas where the temperature in winter does not drop below -1 °C (30 °F). Of course, let’s take into account that when the tree grows old, its resistance to low temperatures increases, reaching as much as – 6.5 °C (43 °F). In relation to the soil, it grows in different soil types but thrives in medium texture and moderate fertility, deep and with excellent porous soils, which retain the necessary moisture, but also allow the adequate airing of the roots. As to pH, it prefers slightly acidic soils, since in alkaline environment iron deficiency is often observed.
  4. Watering in young trees should be done systematically, but here too, when plants grow older, they are extremely resistant to drought. Also, Norfolk Island Pine is very tolerant in the strong winds and quite resistant to soil salinity and salt spray

 

Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)

Norfolk Island Pine, the Cone - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler
Norfolk Island Pine, the Cone - © M. Ritter, W. Mark, J. Reimer and C. Stubler

Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla) - Use

  1. Norfolk Island Pine belongs to the few conifers that can survive indoors. In some countries of the Western world, it is even used as a Christmas tree.
  2. As outdoor plant can be planted individually, in groups or for creating windbreak. However, in all cases, two factors must be taken into account:
  • The dimensions of the tree in maturity
  • The fact of the presence of an extensive superficial root system

Thus, it is advisable to plant Araucaria at least 10 to 12 m (33-40 ft) from homes and buildings.

  1. Norfolk Island Pine, either planted externally or internally, loves jazz. Therefore, for reasons of her uninterrupted development, it is extremely beneficial for it, the exposure to John Coltrane’s music: John Coltrane, in the composition of Mongo Santamaria ‘Afro Blue’, for the uninterrupted development of our little Araucaria.
  1. Γκανιάτσας, Κ. (1982). Συστηματική βοτανική [Systematic botany]. Θεσσαλονίκη: Αριστοτέλειον Πανεπιστήμιον Θεσσαλονίκης.
  2. Pate, J. S., & McComb, A. J. (1981). The Biology of Australian plants. University of Western Australia Press.
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