A Tale Of Survival: The Loneliest Tree On Earth

A Tale Of Survival: The Loneliest Tree On Earth

By Jordan Gold - February 26, 2018

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the loneliest tree on Earth is a Sitka Spruce tree, which stands on the the most southern island of New Zealand, Campbell Island. It is the only tree on the island, and the closest tree of it’s kind is located on the Auckland Island, more than 200 kilometers away.


Campbell Island is located approximately 700 km from Bluff and is known to be one of the most difficult places, with extremely high winds that blow throughout the seasons.  The island experiences only 40 days annually where there is no rain and less than 600 hours of sunshine throughout the year.


It’s the most desirable place to live and most of it’s visitors are scientists who are interested in researching the site.  For more than half a century the island has been deserted, and trees are not intended to grow there due to the high winds and grasses that cover the island.  This is why the loneliest tree on earth is so incredibly impressive.


The Sitka Spruce tree is believed to have been planted by Lord Ranfurly, who was once the governor of New Zealand between 1901 and 1907.  Why he decided to plant in this place specifically remains unclear.  However according to some sources, he wanted to take the first step in making this island more productive.


His idea never had the potential to work due to the harsh weather conditions, but the Sitka Spruce somehow not only survived, but in fact thrived.  Other than being known as the loneliest tree on earth, this unique tree has a shape similar to a massive cauliflower, which is thought to be due to the chopping of it’s trunk every year.



Despite the tree being over 100 years old, it has never made cones, which apparently means that the tree has always remained in a young state.  The Sitka Spruce has made it’s way to the news for having confirmed for researchers that the Earth has now come to a geological epoch known as the Anthropocene.


Who knew such a lonely tree could be so fascinating?





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