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Ponderosa Pine

Pinus ponderosa • Yellow pine, western pine


A large-crowned tree with a straight trunk, typically growing 25 to 30 meters tall. Ponderosa pine occurs on a variety of soils, from extremely dry to well-drained, relatively deep, moist soils. It is native to Canada and can be found growing in the Southern Interior of British Columbia. Fires are common among this species, the thick bark protects the trees from the frequent ground fires.


Needles evergreen, in bundles of 3 (occasionally in 2’s or 5’s); 12-25 cm long, straight, stiff but flexible, very sharp, dark yellowish-green; edges sharply toothed. Bundle-sheath persistent.


Cylindrical to narrowly ovoid when closed, 7-15 cm long, lustrous reddish-brown, pendulous, almost stalkless, often in groups of 3; scales thickened at the tips, bearing rigid sharp prickles, opening at maturity to release the seeds. Cones usually fall during the winter, leaving their stalks with a few basal scales attached to the branchlets. Seed crops every 2-5 years.


Dark gray, rough and scaly when young; with age becoming orange-brown and deeply fissured into large, flat, flaky plates 2-10 cm thick.

186 Trees

Heritage Tree

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