Plant DetailShow Menu

Pinus ponderosa

Phonetic Spelling
PY-nus pon-der-OH-suh
Description

The most common pine in North America, the ponderosa Pine grows with yellowish-brown to cinnamon-red bark in flaky plates.  It prefers deep moist well-drained soil but will grow in a wide range of conditions.  

There are 3 distinct regional varieties of this native tree that often grow in pure stands.  In the Pacific coast region, the variety Ponderosa Pine or Pacific Ponderosa Pine has long needles, 3 in a bundle and large cones.  Rocky Mountain Ponderosa Pine or Interior Ponderosa Pine has short needles, 2 in a bundle and small cones.  In southwest Arizona, you can find Arizona Pine or Arizona Ponderosa Pine.  That variety has 5 slender needles in a bundle.

When broken, the trunk, twigs, and needles emit a pleasant aroma.

Its habit is narrow pyramidal in youth, irregular crown with age.  It has numerous short branches and drops its lower branches.  Old trees have no branches for more than 1/2 of their height.  

There is some susceptibility to root rot, blister rusts and needle blight.

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#drought tolerant#native tree#winter interest#deer resistant#fire resistant#alkaline soil tolerant#fragrant leaf
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#drought tolerant#native tree#winter interest#deer resistant#fire resistant#alkaline soil tolerant#fragrant leaf
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Pinus
    Species:
    ponderosa
    Family:
    Pinaceae
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Root Cutting
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Southwestern USA
    Fire Risk Rating:
    low flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Quail, nutcrackers, and squirrels eat the seeds. They are also collected and stored by chipmunks.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 60 ft. 0 in. - 100 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 25 ft. 0 in. - 30 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Tree
    Habit/Form:
    Open
    Pyramidal
    Rounded
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Description:
    Also 3 to 6 in. cones, single or in clusters of 3 to 5, light reddish-brown
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Needles
    Simple
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    5 to 10 in. rigid, curved needles in bundles of 3, dark green to yellowish-green
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Black
    Dark Brown
    Bark Description:
    Bark on young trees is dark brown to black. In mature trees, the bark can be a yellowish-brown to reddish-orange.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Recreational Play Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer