Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas in the Conservatory

Look at the wonderful surprise I received late yesterday afternoon from the generous folks at Costa Farms! They are the number one grower and distributor of houseplants in North America and number two in the world, and the Norfolk Island Pine tree they sent is just one of many that they make available to gardeners and homeowners.

The tree resembles a traditional Christmas tree and came already decorated with red balls and a Santa hat! It was just the right size for the conservatory, so thanks to Costa Farms, it too is festive for the holidays.

Norfolk Island Pine trees (Araucaria heterophylla) aren't pine trees at all and are easy to care for, living comfortably in the same environment we do. They're inexpensive and readily available year round in garden centers and stores such as Lowe's and Home Depot, but especially now, since they can be used as a small Christmas tree substitute.

Looking down on the Norfolk Island Pine tree, it's easy to see how it got another
of its common names - The Star Tree.

I purchased a larger Norfolk Island Pine as part of a houseplant survey Costa Farms is doing (with funds they provided). Romie wanted to use it for our regular Christmas tree, but we ended up putting that one up, too. 

Native to Norfolk Island, a small island in the south Pacific between Australia, New Zealand, and new Caledonia, the tree is hardy to zones 9 to 11 and likes a more humid environment with temperatures around 65 degrees. I keep our large one in the living room, where it gets bright indirect light and it's cooler than the family room, where we spend most of our time.

Thank you, Costa Farms! Happy Holidays to you, too!


Darla said...

Bren at BGgarden has this exact same little decorated tree...cute. Well, I just added Norfold Island Pine to my list of research plants for after winter.

Anonymous said...

Yea Costa Farms!

Louise Hartwig said...

Yea Costa Farms!

Kylee Baumle said...

Darla ~ Yes, she's one of the bloggers who has a relationship with Costa and is in the survey group, too.

You need to get one NOW! They're plentiful right now because of being Christmas, although I'm sure you could still find one at any other time of the year. They just promote them more heavily at Christmas.

Eliza said...

Neat! My dad had one of these when we were younger. We made little ornaments especially for it's diminutive size.

Weekend Cowgirl said...

Love the Norfolk Pine! What a great size for indoors.

Nutty Gnome said...

These are really sweet! I've not seen them before, but your tiny one is lovely all Christmased up!

Anonymous said...

I had one of them as a houseplant years ago. Each Christmas I'd put a red bow on the tip of it which made it look so cute. Maybe a red bow on my head would make me look cute for Christmas.

Commonweeder said...

Norfolk Pines are wonderful trees - and houseplants. Yours are the fullest and lushest I have ever seen. Hooray for Costa.

Kylee Baumle said...

Eliza ~ Yes, it's cute to decorate!

Weekend Cowgirl ~ It's the perfect size for a tabletop!

Nutty Gnome ~ I think I saw some that were even smaller than this one. So cute!

thewritegardener ~ Do it, then post a picture and I'll let you know! :-)

Commonweeder ~ Yes, these are some of the best I've EVER seen.

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