Torreya taxifolia at Jungle Gardens
Avery Island, Louisiana
Ex situ safeguarding of genetic stock from FL nursery

GROVE SOURCED FROM NURSERY STOCK established by Garrie Landry Fall 2018. Garrie Landry wrote to Torreya Guardians 7 July 2018: "Currently I am working for the McIlhenny Company on Avery Island (home of Tabasco pepper sauce) as their first botanist, and I hope to establish a grove of Torreyas this fall in Jungle Gardens."

GARRIE LANDRY is a professional botanist who in May 2018 notified Torreya Guardians of the presence of mature Florida Torreya trees at the Caroline Dormon Nature Preserve, Briarwood, in north-central Louisiana. Two Torreya Guardians visited that preserve November 2018, reporting results on our Caroline Dormon Nature Preserve torreya webapge.

   Avery Island wikipedia entry:

Avery Island is actually a huge dome of rock salt, three miles (4.8 km) long and two and a half miles (4.0 km) wide.[1] It was created by the upwelling of ancient evaporite (salt) deposits that exist beneath the Mississippi River Delta region. These upwellings are known as "salt domes." Avery Island is one of five salt dome islands that rise above the flat Louisiana Gulf coast. The Five Islands from northwest to southeast are Jefferson Island, Avery Island, Weeks Island, Cote Blanche Island and Belle Isle.

Avery Island is surrounded on all sides by bayous (slow-moving, muddy rivers), salt marsh, and swampland; it sits about 130 miles (210 km) west of New Orleans. At its highest point, the island is 163 feet (50 m) above mean sea level. It covers about 2,200 acres (8.9 km2) and is about 2.5 miles (4.0 km) across at its widest point.

A small human population lives on the island (best known as the source for Tabasco Sauce. The island is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

GARRIE LANDRY bio on Jungle Gardens website

Botanical treasures in Jungle Gardens



2018: 4 July 2018: "I recently traveled to FL and picked up several very nice nursery-grown Torreya plants, and brought them back to Louisiana."

2019: 11 Feb 2019: "So far, Torreyas planted in a forest on Avery Island are doing well; no signs of any issues; anxious to see how they respond the rest of the year. We had a very mild winter this season in Louisiana — not even a killing frost in our region." 13 Oct 2019 [he had taken a trip to visit and photo the big torreya in Madison FL then wrote] "Torreyas to plant in the forest of Jungle Gardens on Avery Island. Those I planted a year ago are thriving and have grown nicely, so I purchased some very nice large ones at a local nursery in Tallahassee and plan to plant them shortly in the same areas to create a grove."

2020: 5 July 2020: "The 5 Torreya trees I planted in a forest on Avery Island are doing exceptionally well, lots of nice new growth on the 2 year plants and as well as the now 1 year plants." He sent Torreya Guardians photos of his grove on 11 July 2020 (see below).


AUGUST 2020 REPORT by Garrie Landry:

Today (Aug 21st) I made a special effort to visit the Torreya plantings in Jungle Gardens, Avery Island. Five trees have been planted in the last 2 years and ALL of them appear to be thriving and showing lots of new growth. Their appearance and color convey health!

Two of the five were planted in 2018 and one of those is now over 6 feet tall. An additional three were planted in 2019 and all have grown very nicely.

HABITAT: I am excited to see how well they are doing in the area I chose. It Is a mature forest — mostly live oaks and widely scattered other natives as well as introduced Podocarpus. The site is on an incline, so water drains quickly from higher up and it's constantly moist. I am confident they will continue to do well here. With that in mind, I hope to at least double the current number, planting an additional five or more this winter.


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