Araucariaceae are an ancient lineage of conifers, and some of the first exotic trees planted in Melbourne Gardens. With well over a century of growth, these giants define the skyline and silhouette of the Gardens, and bring to this modern landscape a touch of the prehistoric. With such characters as the famous Wollemi pine and the notorious Bunya Bunya pine, these trees are a marvel to behold.

This Collection is important as it:

  • Displays the unique forms and aesthetic these trees bring to a landscape.
  • Conserves rare and threatened species, such as the Wollemi pine.
  • Identifies species tolerant of the conditions of future climate change.
Araucaria muelleri on Hopetoun Lawn. This species' epithet muelleri is a reference to the first Director of Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne - Baron Ferdinand von Mueller.

Key Plants

Araucaria cunninghamii

Hoop Pine

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Araucaria heterophylla

Norfolk Island Pine

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Araucaria bidwillii

Bunya Bunya

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Agathis ovata

Mountain Kauri

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<em>Araucaria cunninghamii</em>

Hoop Pine

This species is a tall and long-lived Araucaria native to the dry rainforests of NSW and QLD. It is one of the taller trees in Australia commonly known to grow to 60 metres.

Notes from the Curator

Araucarias, Agathis and Wollemia are wonderful statuesque trees found only in the Southern hemisphere, The Gardens showcases some of the oldest cultivated specimens in Australia and the character of its tree canopy is well defined by these trees. The future of the collection is bright and well suited to a changing climate and of the highest importance to sustain into the future.

I have been actively involved with this collection since 2005 and have sourced many new species for the gardens such as Agathis corbassonii, Agathis vitiensis, Agathis ovata, Agathis montana and Agathis moorei. I have also trialled grafting these species onto the Australian Agathis robusta with great success. I source these new additions by connecting with other Botanic Gardens, Collectors and rare plant nurseries throughout Australia.