Monkey Puzzle Tree
These instructions are sent with the plant gift
This unusual looking Monkey Puzzle Tree (Araucaria Araucana) originates in Chile but is surprisingly hardy here in the UK. They were first brought to the UK in 1795 and were planted by the Victorians at stately homes up and down the country. Almost Jurassic looking in statue these tough plants make a striking feature and will live for decades growing over 50m tall in the right position. They are completely frost hardy and will do well in a range of soils and situations.
Whilst your plant is in a small pot it will need regular watering. Aim to water it heavily and then allow the top of the compost to dry out before watering heavily again. As soon as practical, your Monkey Puzzle Tree will benefit from being planted out in the garden or potted up in a much larger pot. Add a top dressing of well rotted manure or other rich compost to help your plant settle in.
These plants are already 4 years old and will grow on year after year. The spikey needles are evergreen and so will look good all year round. Mature trees will eventually produce pine cones with edible seeds that can be dried or roasted.
Your plant shouldn’t need much feeding but if you are keeping it in the small pot for a while or the needles start to appear yellow or soft then a good general-purpose feed will always give it a good boost.
These plants are reasonably hardy but if we do have particularly cold spells (-10C or colder) then a fleece or heavy straw mulch will give your plant a bit more protection especially in the first couple of years.