Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Pinus coulteri - Coulter Pine

Pinus coulteri: Pinus is the Latin name for P. pinea; coulteri, named after John Merle Coulter, an American botanist.

Also known as Bigcone, nut, or pitch pine.

Native to dry rocky slopes of the inland coastal ranges of southern and central California. Rather uncommon pine scattered in ares of chaparral, mixed coastal pine forest, and oak woodland.

Grows to 30-80' tall with a 20-40' spread, developing an oval form, often with distinct horizantal spreading branches with upturned ends, and a short, stout trunk. Fuller than P. sabiniana.

Needles are stiff, dark bluish green, 5-12" long, 3-fascicled.

Cones are tan 9-14" long, weighing up to 5 pounds, elliptical to oblong-ovoid, short-stalked, with thick scales terminating in recurving horns, develoing in summer, maturing in 2 years, persisting on trees 5-6 years. Compare to P. sabiniana.

Cones are often covered in resin. Notice how thick the needles are.

Bark is dark brown to black, furrowed, with broad scaly ridges. Branchlets are very stout and rough orange-brown.

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