Monkey Puzzle

Araucaria araucana

Red List status


Related spirits


Chile and southwestern Argentina

A tree entwined with childhood memories (how could a monkey ever climb those branches?) In our hometown of Dorking there are quite a few notable examples, yet in its native range it is highly threatened. The species is of great historical and social importance and the timber is prized due to its durability and resistance to fungal decay.

Accessing seed directly from Chile proved too difficult and so Martin Gardner, coordinator of the Conifer Conservation programme at the Royal Botanic Garden of Edinburgh gave great support to the project, and gifted 20 young Araucaria araucana seedlings. We received them early March 2015 at a handover in Kew Gardens.