How to Plant North Fork Pine Trees

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The north fork pine (Araucaria heterophylla), a member of the Araucariaceae family and also called the Norfolk Island Pine, is not actually a pine. This plant sells as a houseplant, but you can plant it outdoors if you live in USDA hardiness zones 10 and 11, where the coldest it gets in winter is 30 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit. The north fork pine can attain a height of 200 feet if growing in a forest, but usually the north fork pine will less than half that height for the average gardener. Plant the north fork pine in any kind of soil. If frost happens to kill the tree you planted, new stems can come from the roots and it can regrow.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Water
  • Find an area that receives full sun. Since you should not prune the north fork pine, choose a location away from power lines or other overhead obstacles. Since the north fork pine has a weak root system, it can blow over in a strong wind or hurricane. Plant the pine where it will do little damage should this happen.

  • Dig a hole with a diameter three times larger than that of the pot, but the same depth. Remove any rocks, sticks or dirt clods you find.

  • Fill the hole with water and allow it to drain away.

  • Remove the pine from the container when the water is gone from the hole.

  • Place the root ball of the north fork pine in the hole and then refill the hole with soil. Tamp the soil down.

  • Water the north fork pine thoroughly. Provide water through the first year of growing to keep the soil evenly moist.

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