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Plant Directory

Red Pine: Pinus resinosa

Red Pines, sometimes called Norway Pine, are stately, native evergreens. In our area, they typically grow to 50-60 ft. They have 5” long needles in bundles of two. They are also characterized by scaly, diamond-shaped bark , reddish-orange in young trees;  the color can be seen in the upper bark of older trees as well. There are many cultivars of Red Pine, some of them compact. Young trees usually have dense foliage and a pyramidal form, while older trees usually lose their lower branches and have rounded crowns.


Red Pines are picturesque trees often seen in paintings, clinging to rocky ledges. They can endure low temperatures and harsh wind.  They are susceptible to salt, however, and do not do well in ocean wind.


Red Pines are solid trees that can do well in poor soils. The trees require full sun like acidic, sandy or gravelly soil. Once established they are hardy and drought tolerant.


Advice from the arborists at Almstead:

The right site is important for Red Pines. They can thrive where most other trees could never survive; but they are not suited for humus-rich or alkaline soils. They also require full sun.


In the right place, Red Pines tend to be healthy trees. They sometimes attract bark beetles, a problem we can usually control. There are also moths and sawflies that damage the branch tips. Most of these infestations can be treated as well. Periodic inspection is always a good idea, so that we can identify these problems before they cause disfigurement to the tree.


Photo sources:

Top: Public Domain

Bottom: Richard Webb, Self-employed horticulurist,

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