The New Leaf: Holiday plants ranked (Part 1)

#6: Norfolk Island Pine

Native to an island off the coast of New Zealand, the Norfolk Island Pine makes for quite a looker, and to many may seem like the perfect festive decor. Beautiful green needles and their petite size make them an amazing plant. However, I would not recommend this plant for the holidays, thus its ranking of dead last. 

According to Gardening Know How, these pines are much more like a tropical plant than that of your typical pine. They cannot tolerate less than around 35 degrees fahrenheit and crave high humidity. This problem, however, can be solved by using a pebble tray. To the gardening noobs out there, this is a saucer underneath the pot of a plant that is covered with pebbles that have water sitting just below them. These “pines” need bright light or bright indirect light, and should be watered when the top of the soil is dry to the touch. These plants, for a pretty experienced plant lover, may seem okay care-wise, but may be a little more of a challenge for some. I promise you there’s a good reason as to why these pines are at the bottom of my list, not just because of their care requirements. 

Along with these plants being somewhat picky, they also are not the ideal plant for those looking to be long-term owners. Unless they have 200-foot tall ceilings, as the plants can reach more than  100 feet in height if not trimmed, they can become rather intrusive. If you trim your pine down from the top every once in a while, it won’t grow much more than the height you trimmed it to. So, maybe I am a little biased. At the same time though, why a tree inside? I would much rather look at a palm myself. To add, if ingested, these plants could also cause your furry friends to become depressed and vomit. Tread carefully with this purchase, my friends. 

If you were to still want a massive tree growing in your house, they are fairly cheap to buy. Depending on the size and where you purchase them, the pine will likely range between 15 and 40 dollars. Not the most budget-friendly, but not too bad, considering you’re essentially buying what could potentially be as tall as the trees outside of your house. They would look adorable with sweet, little ornaments on them in any setting, in pretty much any pot, and don’t necessarily scream Christmas. If you’re someone that always kills their plants anyway, and just wants a cute pine for the holiday season, then this is probably one of your best bets. If you’re looking for a small, non-fake Christmas tree, this is probably the plant for you. As I mentioned, you can also trim it down to whatever height you want. Otherwise, unless you’re willing to grow a literal tree in your house, I would say maybe consider a fake tree from Target. Norfolk Island Pine lovers, don’t come for me.