Tropical Gardening: Buy a ‘tropical pine’ for Christmas to support local famers

This Araucaria known as the monkey puzzle pine is native to Chile. Most come from semi-tropical Pacific islands like New Caledonia and Norfolk Island. This one can take some cold and may be grown in coastal Washington, Oregon and even British Columbia. (Voltaire Moise/courtesy photo)

Our Thanksgiving turkey is at the soup stage and Christmas is almost here. Poinsettias are in full bloom as well as the related shrub, snows of Kilimanjaro, or Euphorbia leucocephala. Folks are sending cards, buying and mailing gifts, but it seems like most of us are a bit slow in getting our mainland Christmas trees up this year.