Plant Araucaria: [Care, Irrigation, Cultivation, Substrate]

The Araucaria ((Araucaria araucana)It is a tree belonging to the genus of conifers.

In ancient times and today it develops naturally in subtropical forests together with various species of conifers.

Its geographical distribution is mainly in the southern hemisphere in areas such as Brazil, New Guinea, Australia, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and mainly in Chile. It has also been brought to parts of Europe and North America as an ornamental plant.

This tree can grow between40 and 80 meters high.

It has the appearance of a pine tree because of its pyramidal -shaped crown, where the branches grow perpendicular to the trunk and sometimes they can curve a little towards the sky.

They have a greenish color, generally with strong shades. They normally grow from three to seven branches per level. These branches reach the lower levels when the tree is still young. Later they break off and the permanent crown grows to several meters in height.

All the branches are densely covered with shiny dark green leaves, with a very rigid texture and very close together, pointing their tip towards the outside of the tree in the shape of a lance.

They are wide and difficult to detach from the stem. They are so firm to be able tocope with snowfall and cold climates.

Did you know…This tree has great longevity, being able to live beyond 1000 years. Each year it usually grows between 5 and 8 centimeters, being still susceptible when it is one and a half meters tall. Important Points when Planting Aracuria:

  • When? Preferably during the spring.
  • Where? It is not very shade tolerant. It favors the sun, in fact it is very resistant to drought. Preferably in an area where it receives rainwater.
  • How long does it take to grow? It is a tree that can grow a lot, but it is slow in its growth. You must arm yourself with patience.
  • How big can you get? It can reach between 40-80 meters.
  • How do we prepare the land? Dry or sandy loam soils with good drainage.
  • How do we water? When it is an adult tree, it is not necessary to water. At first it is convenient to keep the soil moist, without flooding. drip irrigation, in times of little rain, every two days.
  • How do we sow? You can do it by seed (slow) or by cutting.
  • Favorable associations? Other conifers.
  • Plagues and diseases? Rust Micronegeria fagi

When to plant araucaria? The time

The process of sowing by seeds or by cuttings of the Araucariait is complex.

If you still do not have much experience planting, you can acquire a small specimen and try to propagate the tree from that.

If you already have the seeds, it is preferable thatsow them in the springor very shortly before that season.

This tree produces specimens with male flowers and specimens with female flowers which bear fruit.

The male flowers are conical in shape and are located at the end of the branches. Their color is dark brown and they measure from eight to ten centimeters long. They usually appear between the months of August and September.

On the other hand, the female flowers are green, also spherical in shape. They have a diameter of 15 to 20 centimeters in diameter. They are located at the ends of young branches and usually appear at the end of November.

Finally,pollinationit occurs until January where the male cone opens and disperses the seeds 16 to 18 months later.

Total,the reproductive cycle lasts two years.

Each cone usually releases about 150 seeds, which are also called pine nuts because of their pointed shape. The seeds are quite large (4 to 5 cm long) and mahogany in color. In natural areas, rodents and birds help spread the seeds and help them grow.

Where to do it? light and temperature

It is better that you sow the seeds or the cutting directly on the ground or the final place.

Careful with this…Araucarias grow a lot. They are a very large tree. Plan well where you want them to grow so that later they do not raise the ground or break a wall of a building.

This is because the seeds are very susceptible toultraviolet raysand develop resistance on the side that is exposed to the sun.

If you have harvested them in a container and then you want to transplant them, it is very likely that the seed will turn when it is time to relocate it in the ground. This would cause the death of the seed, even if it has already germinated.

the araucaria isa drought resistant treeor in very intense sun.

It is moderately shade intolerant. It should also be in an area wherereceive rainwater.

However, in coniferous forests it usually withstands temperatures below zero degrees, reaching minus 20 degrees Celsius in winter.

Likewise, it supports snowfall and long seasons without rainfall. In addition, the tree is resistant to fire and is oflong longevityhaving great abundance of seeds just at 40 years.

How to prepare the land? The pH and the type of soil

grows ondry or sandy loam soils,but also in fertile soils with organic matter present.

It is important that the land has good drainage for very rainy seasons.

The roots of this tree have a powerful root system that allows them to develop in areas with rocky soils and at high altitudes.

How and how much do we water the Araucaria?

Commonlydoes not need wateringbecause it resists droughts and rainy seasons; however, if the climate where you live does not resemble that described, you can water the tree once a week allowing the soil to be moist.

How do we plant Araucaria step by step?

by seeds

  1. Araucaria seeds have a very short shelf life, so to check if they are still alive you can put them in a container with water.
  2. If they float, they are no longer fertile.
  3. Once you have selected the potential seeds, plant them in the soil without burying much and at a distance of about 30 centimeters.
  4. Remember not to crush the soil too much to make it easier for them to germinate. Between 90 to 120 days you will be able to observe how the seed germinates.
  5. At the beginning it is important that you water the area without flooding and that it is exposed to the sun, you can add a little compost or organic fertilizer (such as Calcium Nitrate) around it to protect the seedling.

by cuttings

On the other hand, if you decide to plant cuttings, make sure they are 15 centimeters and have a young stem. Bury it in the ground and provide the same care as if you had planted seeds.

It usually bears fruit at 25 years, with rare cases in which it bears fruit as early as 15.

What favorable associations does it have?

Usually, the araucaria grows together with other trees of the same species in order to carry out reproduction. This is normally carried out until the trees are seven years old.

What pests and diseases does it have?

The species is particularly susceptible to attack bythe rust Micronegeria fagi.

And fungi that affect the leaves and bark of young trees. To prevent and eliminate it, it is better to prune the infected branches and spray Cola de Caballo extract to prevent the spread of the fungus.

How long does the araucaria live?

It is a species with great longevity reaching, in its areas of origin, up to a millennium of life.

How long does it take to grow the araucaria?

It takes an average of 20 years to grow, as it takes its time to develop each part of its structure.

How long does it take to produce fruit?

It will also take time to generate your first harvest. The most usual is that it is around 25 years old, but there are cases in which an early production occurs at 15 years old.

Can it be grown in a pot?

It can be grown in a pot without any inconvenience, transplanting it to larger containers when appropriate.

How many times does the araucaria produce fruit?

The production of the araucaria is established with a frequency of every 3 or 4 years.

Should araucaria be pollinated to obtain fruit?

It is not necessary. Pollination is carried out by the araucaria naturally with the help of the wind.

How cold can the araucaria tree tolerate?

It is able to tolerate in its place of origin up to -20° C.

How many araucarias can be planted per hectare?

A number of 800 to 1600 araucaria plants per hectare are planted.

What type of fertilizer does the araucaria need?

You can work with both organic and mineral fertilizers that have a high level of acidity.

How much heat and/or drought can araucaria tolerate?

Areas where the summer heat is very strong do not go well. Already above 25° C it will start to suffer.

It manages to resist the summer drought, as long as it is not very long. In extreme heat, it is necessary to water and refresh its leaves with dew.

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