Patagonia

Nobody knows exactly where does the Patagonia officially start in Chile.

To simplify matters, we call so the area to the south of Puerto Montt.

The climate there is mainly influenced by the Andes chain acting as a divide. In the areas west of it (Carretera Austral) the oncoming clouds release the rain from the pacific. Whereas east of it the rainfall decreases rapidly (Punta Arenas gets only 492 mm). A botanical roundtrip in Patagonia is therefore just as contrastful as diversified.

Carretera Austral

The Carretera Austral runs largely sorrounded by awesome Magellan forests. This type of forest has less species due to the hard climate, whereas Coihue de Magallanes (Nothofagus betuloides) and Lenga (Nothofagus pumilio) are more present. The trees are often covered by semiparasites of the type Myzodendron and lichens. Alerces find their area of proliferation close to Chaiten. It’s worth it to visit the NP Pumalin. In humid places and along creeks you’ll find the distinctive huge leaves of the edible Nalca (Gunnera tinctoria) and lush exhuberant fuchsia (Fuchsia magellanica). On the misty hilltops or inaccessible coasts there are awesome forests which are covered with dosh and ferns, and lichen and doshes on the ground.

Pampa

In the argentinian frontier zone along the Andes the flora is changes abruptly. The argentinian Pampa has a variety of bushes (Ribes magellanicum, Epetrum rubrum, Berberis buxifolia) grasses ( Festuca gracillima, Festuca magellanica) and pillow-like plants (Mullinum spinosum, Anarthohyllum desideratum, Maytenus magellanica) that defie the strong winds. To the south of Coihaique, the Pampa leads far into the chilean teritorry. This change can be seen pretty clearly in the NP Torres del Paine, from the Pampa to the Magellan forests. In spring, different kinds of orchids (Gavilea australis), irises (Sisyrinchium chilense), gentian (Gentinella magellanica) and saxifraga (Saxifraga magellanica) flourish, among others.

Travel destinations in Patagonia:

P. N. Hornorpiren, Parque Pumalin, P. N. Queulat, P. N. Torres del Paine