Growing A Norfolk Island Pine Tree For Christmas


Back on our Summer trip to San Diego, I came across a tree that had a specific look to it:  the Norfolk Island Pine.  There was one of these trees right across the street from our house - and it was that one that got me to research what the tree was called.  But, we also came across the '1st outdoor lighted Christmas Tree' that is up at the Hotel Del Coronado - and it turns out that *that* tree, is too, a Norfolk Island Pine tree

The reason that I bring this up is that when I was at Home Depot recently, I came across these tiny Norfolk Island Pines that are $6.99.  My hand is in that photo at the top for scale.   These young trees don't have the shape that I think about when I think Norfolk Pine.  Here's what I'm talking about.   Has those long, limited limbs with needles pointing upwards.   

They also have slightly larger ones for a few bucks more.  All of them come in these holiday-packaged pots with little ornaments as I think they're either intended as potential Christmas tree replacements or something akin to a 'hostess gift'. 

As for pricing, I see a 3-4 foot version over on Fast Growing Trees (where I've bought a few things) that is going for $89.99 - so the price goes up fast once you get over a couple of feet.   Also, the FGT listing claims that it is a 'patio tree' for our zone (5b) and says the height tops out at 5-8' tall (in a container), but the folks at the Missouri Botanical Garden say that it will get 100' to 200' in height natively.  I'd be quite happy with a nice patio tree that is eight feet tall, but I'm not sure where something that could live in our house during the non-patio season.  I suppose that if I start with a six or nine-inch version, I won't have to make that call for quite some time (if at all), right? 

This Winter, I've brought in a few ferns from the girls' Fairy Gardens and one succulent - a pencil cactus - that has made it a couple of seasons.  Here's what the Firesticks Cactus looked like when I bought it in 2018.  I've put them upstairs in the bedroom that gets the best Southern exposure.  I've tried to keep them well watered, but last year I tried the same thing and none of them survived the Winter inside.  If I pick up one of these Norfolk Island Pines, I can put it upstairs along with the rest of these Summer transplants and see how it will do.  Maybe a grow light is order? 

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