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Coulter Pine
Pinus coulteri
  
About Coulter Pine (Pinus coulteri) 8 Nurseries Carry This Plant The Coulter Pine or Big-cone Pine (Pinus coulteri) is a native of the coastal mountains of southern California (United States) and northern Baja California (Mexico). Isolated groves are found as far north as the San Francisco Bay Area in Mt. Diablo State Park and Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve. The species is named after Thomas Coulter, an Irish botanist and physician. The size ranges from 10-24 meter (30-80 feet) tall, and a trunk diameter up to 1 meter (3 feet). The trunk is vertical and branches horizontal to upcurved. The leaves are needle-like, in bundles of three, waxy pale gray-green, 15-30 centimeter (6-12 inches) long and stout, 2 millimeter (0.01 inch) thick. The outstanding characteristic of this tree is the large, spiny cones which are 20-40 centimeter (8-16 inches) long, and weigh 2-5 kg (4-10 lbs) when fresh. Coulter Pines produce the largest cones of any pine tree species (people are actually advised to wear hardhats when working in Coulter Pine groves), although the slender cones of the sugar pine are longer. The large size of the cones has earned them the nickname "widowmakers" among locals. The wood is weak and soft, so that the species is little used other than for firewood. It is also occasionally planted as an ornamental tree in parks and large gardens.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Plant Type
Tree

Size
Size
20 - 138 ft tall

Form
Form
Pyramidal

Growth Rate
Growth Rate
Slow

Flower Color
Flower Color
Yellow

Flowering Season
Flowering Season
Spring

Wildlife Supported
 


Landscaping Information
Sun
Sun
Full Sun, Part Shade

Moisture
Moisture
Low

Nurseries
Nurseries

Soil Drainage
Soil Drainage
Fast, Medium

Soil Description
Soil Description
Dry rocky soils

Common uses
Common uses
Bank Stabilization, Bird Gardens

Sunset Zones
Sunset Zones?
2*, 3*, 4*, 5, 6*, 7*, 8, 9, 10, 14*, 15*, 16*, 17*, 18*, 19*, 20*, 21*, 22*, 23*, 24

Natural Setting
Climate
Climate
Annual Precipitation: 11.8" - 59.8", Summer Precipitation: 0.16" - 3.08", Coldest Month: 33.6" - 55.7", Hottest Month: 57.8" - 79.3", Humidity: 0.60" - 26.90", Elevation: 232" - 8738"

Alternative Names
Common Names: Bigcone Pine, Pino De Brea, Pitch Pine


Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora


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