The gardens of Greenford are full of the descendants of plants brought back by collectors but this tree, Araucaria araucana, has to be the most spectacular of them. The common name came about because even a monkey would find it difficult to climb anything so spiny to get to the fruit. They were originally from Chile and Argentina but this one seems quite at home in the small front garden of a semi-detached house in British suburbia. I suspect that many gardeners fell in love with monkey puzzle trees when they first became available, unaware of their potential height. This one is now taller than the house but I hope it survives any changes in ownership.
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