Things once lost can be found again

wollemi.jpgIn a world where we often think we know all there is to know, it’s nice to be surprised from time to time with a nudge from the past. Such a piece of living history was uncovered a few years ago in an Australian rainforest, where a hiking botanist found an unusual looking tree. The sample he collected was later identified as belonging to a plant previously thought to have been extinct for two million years, the Wollemi Pine.

The Wollemi Pine is one of the world’s oldest and rarest plants and fewer than 100 adult trees are known to exist in the wild.

The oldest known Wollemi Pine fossil dates back 90 million years and it is believed that the Pines may have existed since the Jurassic period 200 million years ago. Following its rediscovery the Pine has become part of a conservation effort to save the species and re-establish it throughout the country, with people able to purchase potted pines and grow them in their own homes.

Stories like this serve as a reminder that humans are but a tiny dot on the whole timescale of global evolution. In a world that grows increasingly cynical and bitter by the day, it is important to reflect on these little events and never forget the world can be an amazing and inspiring place. Imagine what else is out there just waiting to be discovered.

9 Comments

  1. The Artist

    What an inspiring find. Always great to be looking for that special discovery. Have a wonderful Christmas, best wishes, The Artist

  2. Dave Dragon

    I wounder if the potted pines will be made available outside of AUS?

    I would love to have one.

    Thanks for posting this info.

    Dave Dragon
    http://davedragon.blogspot.com

  3. Tracey

    Hi The Artist – So true. And kind of an apt story about a pine given the time of year. Merry Christmas to you!

    Hi Dave Dragon – I believe there are plans to release them worldwide. At the moment you can get them in the UK, North America, Europe and Japan. I think you can sign up to find out when they’ll become available elsewhere.

  4. jan

    Humans can be very arrogant, thinking we have dominion over and all knowledge of the earth. Good story.

  5. Tracey

    Hi Jan – Thanks for your message. I agree – sometimes we need to be brought back down to earth with a story of something more ancient than ourselves.

  6. Lloyd BRADBURY

    Maybe man will decover self before he is extint
    Thankyou for the posive meaning of this discovery

  7. floyd

    This is why I love the internet, so many different stories and fascinating things to learn and it is great to know there is a conservation effort to save the species. Great post, found you surfing on blogmad and being an environmentalist at heart myself, I find a post such as this both inspiring and enlightening. (added to favorites)

  8. Dustin

    Very cool story. I hadn’t heard it, so thanks for sharing. 🙂

  9. Tracey

    Hi Lloyd – A very nice thought…I wonder if it will happen. We sometimes think we have come so far, but at times I wonder about that.

    Hi Floyd – Thanks so much for passing through and I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I’ve popped you in my blogroll, hopefully I’ll see you back here again. Thanks.

    Hi Dustin – Thanks for the nice thoughts. I’m glad that people have found the story inspirational.

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