Welcome Agent Jim

Here at Monkey Central we’ve had a bit of a blow. I no longer possess my trusty Fiesta that has made many monkey hunting trips with me. And because of the nature of the loss, the prospect of driving at all is no longer in my future. Not quite sure how taxis might respond to ‘Stop, there’s one’, and that definitely won’t work on buses or trains. However, as I’ve said before, one of the great things about this blog is that it’s not really ‘mine’, because all these monkey puzzle trees wouldn’t be catalogued if it wasn’t for the help and dedication from a growing number of people. So whilst my monkey hunting may be curtailed I’m confident that all you lovely people will continue to be keeping your eyes peeled.

And as I reported in my last post, I’m really pleased that the monkey team has been joined by Jim in Cornwall. Jim was both surprised and delighted to be awarded ‘Agent’ status so soon, but I felt it was appropriate as his work was very thorough and quick. So a formal ‘Welcome Agent Jim’. Agent Jim has continued to do some stirling work and I will be reporting on his finds. But first – what else has been arriving for the catalogue?

Doug in Swansea has sent me several photographs of a veritable ‘forest’ of young monkey puzzle trees at the National Botanic Garden of Wales.

SA Botanic Garden Wales

The gardens tell us they planted around 100 in the Woods of the World area as part of the tree planting for the Queen’s Jubilee. In addition nearly 3,000 birch, poplar, alder, willow and oak were planted. Of the 100 monkey puzzle trees, sadly only 60 have survived. But they are now added to the catalogue in SA.

Doug’s photographs reminded me that I’d seen a photograph of the forest of monkey puzzle trees at the Eden Project, and so they should be included on the catalogue – @edenscience tell me there are ‘currently 194, arguably the largest ex-situ collection of wild collected Monkey Puzzles’. Wow.


Monkey puzzle forest at the Eden Project.

Other finds seem fairly small compared to those two additions! But Doug also spotted two lovely trees in Keswick, CA5 and CA6. Steve in Leeds has another tree LS93. Regular correspondent Agent Philip reported just one near Tarporley at Iddenshall Farm CW32.

Back to Agent Jim and his recent finds. There are various additions to the PL catalogue. So we have PL27 in Looe, a lovely pair in the grounds of the Old Victorian Passmore Edwards Hospital, which was built in 1897 – so ripe for Victorian monkeys, PL28 and PL29.

PL28 and PL29

PL28 and PL29

PL35 (a mighty tree) and PL36 at Trevarrick Hall, and sadly just a stump of another older tree there too.



One nearby L37 in Trevarrick Drive. A further two at Lanhydrock estate L38 and L39. And five lovely trees in the ‘Old Cemetery’ of Bodmin on Cross Lane, PL40 to PL44. A ‘magic place’ said Jim.

Cross Lane Cemetery, Bodmin

Cross Lane Cemetery, Bodmin



The rest of Jim’s finds are a staggering 51 trees all in the grounds of Pencarrow House, and I’ll be reporting those in a separate post.

Oh, and Agent Jim has his eye on another big collection of monkeys as well:



This ‘Monkey Map’ project is a personal project and the work of me, Sarah Horton. I am helped by my task of cataloguing all monkeys by keen monkey puzzle hunters who also do this in their free time. It is a work of personal passion and brings me great joy. Thank you everyone for your support. 

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