Some of My Favorite Trees in Buenos Aires

Feliz Primavera!

It seems like a good time to make a post about trees.

Not that there’s a bad time to post about trees, honestly.

First off, though, this is not a comprehensive list of every rad tree in the city.  In fact, one very rad tree is absent, although I will add it whenever I make it to Recoleta and photograph the famous 200-year-old Grand Gomero.  The following trees aren’t so well known; they labor in obscurity, providing shade and bird housing and sometimes even brilliant floral displays.

Please note–I am not great at identifying tree species, but I’ll do my best where I can.

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If you thought I was bad at photographing small things in museums, wait til you see me try to fit huge trees into frame.

This stately guy here gets to go first because the Supreme Court building is in the background and this is the last landmark you’re going to see in this post.  This tree lives in the Plaza Lavalle, and if you’re visiting the city, you have a good chance of seeing it.  It’s one block over from the back of the Teatro Colon, right on the D subway line, so if you’re seeing any of the sights of the area, stop by and tell it that it’s doing a great job.  I haven’t the foggiest idea what kind of tree it is.

LOOK AT THIS ABSOLUTE UNIT.

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This chunky beast is an ombú.  I think.  Shading several chess tables and then some, this expansive benevolent overlord stands at one end of the Barrancas de Belgrano, a large park that slopes a bit and therefore earned the name of “Barrancas” (cliffs) because people have given a slight incline far too much consideration.

As a bonus, these two are at the other end of Barrancas and I like them because it looks like a tree and its pet tree.

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Speaking of residing in Belgrano, here are two trees in Barrio Chino, very close to Barrancas, that might only be noticed in the spring.

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Kinda lied about the Supreme Court building being the only landmark; that’s the arch at the entry to Barrio Chino there on the right.

These sweet little things bear white and red flowers and are practically hugging, so it looks like one tree with two colors.

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I guess that’s sort of cheating but this is my list and I can do what I want.

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A tree of high comedy.

This is a monkey puzzle, which wins best name for a tree species.  It looks like a twirling weirdo, and therefore I empathize with it strongly.  This particular monkey puzzle provides a home for roughly a jillion monk parakeets in the Parque Centenario.

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speaking of comedy trees

There are a lot of palo borracho trees in the city, but damn if this one (on the grounds of the Museo Historico del Regimiento Granaderos a Caballo General San Martín) isn’t just extra.  “Palo borracho” means “drunken stick,” but the more dignified name for the species is the silk floss tree.  There’s a lot more to this tree than its sexy curves.  The flowers are big and bright pink and the fruits are eight inch long capsules filled with cottony floofy fluff.  There’s just a lot going on there.

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I don’t know anything about this situation, but I find it utterly delightful.

Finally, I give you this little unassuming guy.

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This is a young jacaranda, and it is not shown in all its glory.  There are also many far grander jacarandas in the city.  But this one is right outside the window of a burger joint in Microcentro that I often find myself in when I need a quick bite before hopping on the subway.  I usually sit next to that window, and I’m looking forward to watching my small tree friend bloom in the next month, even if the burgers are decidedly subpar.

So there you have it.  A collection of my favorite trees in the city.  I’ll add the Grand Gomero at the end when I can, but for now, here’s the sign for a shop that combines two things I love most about this city: the trees and the book shops.

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