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9 of the world's most amazing trees

By: Shea Gunther on June 26, 2018, 11:10 a.m.
wollemi pine

Photo: J Brew/flickr

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Wollemi pine

The Wollemi pine in Australia is a living dinosaur. The oldest Wollemi tree fossil has been dated to 200 million years ago. When a living Wollemi — which isn't technically a pine tree — was discovered in 1994, scientists were stunned. The exact location of the pines has been kept under wraps to protect the fewer than 100 trees known to be growing in the wild. In a bid to keep the trees from slipping into extinction, a propagation program was started in 2006 that allowed the general public to purchase a Wollemi sapling and they can be seen in various botanical gardens. Australia's New South Wales Office of Environment and Heritage calls it an "insurance policy" to save the species.

The program appears to be successful. In 2018, "some 83 percent of the insurance Wollemi pines are surviving and have increased in size by up to 37 percent — making them mature enough to produce potentially viable seeds much earlier than expected," NSW Environment Minister Gabrielle Upton told NDTV.