The Wollemi pine is one of the world’s rarest trees.
Long thought to be extinct, a stand of Wollemi pines was found in 1994. An off-duty park ranger discovered forty of these rare trees in a narrow canyon of Wollemi National Park, northwest of Sydney, Australia. Before this discovery, the Wollemi pine was only known from two-million-year-old fossils!
To date, fewer than 100 of these trees have been found in Wollemi National Park, which is the only known natural location of these extremely rare plants. To protect the wild trees, their exact location was not made public. But some plant enthusiasts have found their location and unfortunately introduced disease, which is now threatening the population.
Soon after the Wollemi pine was identified in 1994, scientists collected seeds and cuttings and successfully brought the tree into cultivation. Today, public gardens in many countries display cultivated Wollemi pines.