Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Cook's Pine, New Caledonian Pine, Coral Reef Araucaria
Araucaria columnaris

Family: Araucariaceae
Genus: Araucaria (air-ah-KAIR-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: columnaris (kol-LUM-nair-iss) (Info)

Synonym:Araucaria cookii

3 members have or want this plant for trade.

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over 40 ft. (12 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)
20-30 ft. (6-9 m)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun


Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:

Grown for foliage

Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; germinate in a damp paper towel

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

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There are a total of 50 photos.
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1 positive
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral plant_it On Jun 12, 2012, plant_it from Valparaiso, IN wrote:

Cook's Pine is native to New Caledonia in the southwestern Pacific.

I rate it neutral b/c I bought it at Christmas time at Home Depot hoping to plant it outdoors after the holiday season. I subsequently learned it would not survive outdoors in cold climates. I felt duped. I should have bought a pine native to my region.

Positive punaheledp On Jul 8, 2004, punaheledp from Kailua, HI (Zone 11) wrote:

both this and a. heterophylla grown here in Hawaii. Very similar especially when young.

Neutral palmbob On Dec 25, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

These trees are about the only commonly grown Araucaria from New Caledonia (known for its variety of Araucarias) and probably the most commonly grown species of Araucaria overall... though no one would know it. 98% of all Norfolk Island Pines (Araucaria heterophylla) sold in the USA are actually this species and NOT A heterophylla. See the Araucaria heterophylla page in the Plantfiles to more discussion on the differences. But basically this is a miniature tree in comparison in true Araucaria heterophyllas... these have narrow silhouettes and closely spaced branches while Araucaria heterophylla is truly a massive trees with spreads of nearly 20'-30' feet at the base (branch tip to branch tip) while A columnaris is more like 10' (or less sometimes). Branches on A heterophylla are strikingly equidistant and usually several feet to up to 6' apart along up the trunk. A heterophylla has a triangular silhouette, while A columnaris is nearly columnar (while still being a narrow triangle).

The branches of this tree are covered with leaves so densely packed that they look like small hanging cords. It's a good tree in warmer areas where a really tall and somewhat unusual conifer is needed.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Fountain Valley, California
Hayward, California
San Leandro, California
Hilo, Hawaii
Honolulu, Hawaii

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