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Western White Pine

TREES

GENUS/SPECIES


Pinus monticola

FAMILY


Pinaceae

SYNONYMS


Information not available

DISTRIBUTION


Western US

  • NW Washington eastward to NW Montana
  • NW Montana southwestward through N Idaho and central Oregon to N and E California
  • N California northward to NW Washington

Comments

Western white pine is an important western timber tree, and it is found from near sea level in the northern part of its range up to 12,000 feet or more in the Sierra Nevada. Its needles are very flexible, appearing bluish-green and are from about 2 to 4 inches long in bundles of five. Its rather narrow female cones are not prickly. It becomes a large tree up to 150 feet or more with a trunk approaching 10 feet in diameter, and makes its best growth in moderately moist but well-drained soil. Disturbed areas, such as those that have recently experienced a forest fire, provide suitable habitat for the establishment of this tree. Western white pine may grow alone or in combination with several other species of trees, most of these also being coniferous. It provides food and cover for many kinds of wildlife. The wind-blown pollen is produced in rather large quantities from small male catkins in the spring, and the female or seed cones, which may reach 11 inches in length, ripen after their second summer of growth.