Argentina: Araucaria Trees in Neuquen

Araucaria araucana grows only in the remote part along the ridge of the Andes on the Chile/Argentina border and is endangered. The tree is also called the monkey puzzle tree for its bizarre branches and pinonera for its piñon-pine like seeds. More interestingly, this is one of the most prehistoric trees on earth, hardly evolved from the times of dinasaurs, when these comfier were proliferate all over the world (other species can be found in New Caledonia and Norfolk Islands in the Pacific). Rather then needles like other conifers, araucarias have scale-like thick and spiky leaves. Araucarias are very climate resistance and can withstand huge temperature swings, but also volcanic eruptions, grow on volcanic soils, and survive in most inhospitable conditions.