During the Jurassic period 200 million years ago it wasn’t just Dinosaurs that abounded. Jurassic plants were also in existence such as ferns, cycads and conifers. Amongst those conifers were living redwoods, cypresses, pines and yews.
The Wollemi Pine is one of the world’s oldest and rarest conifer trees and was considered extinct for 150 million years – it is closely associated with the Jurassic period and the Prehistoric Dinosaurs. The oldest Wollemi type fossil dates back 90 million years!
Only discovered in Sydney, Australia in 1994 Wollemi is an aboriginal word meaning “look around you, keep your eyes open and watch out”. The Wollemi is named after the Wollemi National Park where it was found – but the exact location within the 200km Park is kept a secret due to the fragile nature of the wild habitat. Only selected researchers are allowed to visit. It is so rare that less than 100 adult trees are known to exist in the wild. Its scientific name is Wollemi Nobilis honouring David Noble who discovered the plant.
In our opinion the Wollemi is one of the very best and most attractive of all these ancient conifers. It has unusual, soft, elegant silvery foliage and stays fairly upright and slim so works well in large or small gardens. It has the potential to grow to around 13m height although it is fairly slow growing and would take many decades and optimum conditions to ever reach its full height in the UK.
Here at Paramount Plants we have them available to buy from 1m up to 3m height. The trees which are 3m are around 15 years of age and grow only around 10-20cm per annum. Any size of these trees make fantastic presents and are supplied with a free presentation package including Wollemi plant food and a booklet explaining about the tree.
Unusually the new growth shoots at the ends of the old foliage and is a brighter colour changing as it ages to blue green/silver. As the tree ages (from around 6 years of age) the bark bubbles and has the appearance of bubbling chocolate. The foliage sometimes changes to a bronze appearance in the colder months of the year.
Even the extreme frosts in the South-East over the last couple of years have not caused a problem with this tree.
Extensive research is ongoing to protect the Wollemi Pine Tree and planting just 1 tree will help to offset over 2% of your own carbon footprint..Buying a Wollemi Pine will not only help to protect the species but will also safeguard its continued survival.