Maritime pine

Maritime pine

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Question: Maritime pine

Hi I find myself in the southernmost tip of Italy, and more precisely in Portopalo di capo spero - near Pachino ---, in the province of Syracuse, I have several lands dedicated to gardens, in one of which I have several marine pine plants , so called in my part, I have a pine forest where there are about 30 pines of about 35 years each, sunlit at 360 ° and about 50 meters. from the sea, height about 6 meters of the pines and 1m above the sea level.
Seeing that the lower part about 3 meters have dry branches, and feeding them only with water and a lot of sun, I wanted to know to make them reinvigorate a lot what to do or how to conciliate them to enrich the soil of substances that need for these trees and still the pines are cimed like the eucalyptus in order to grow more green again ???
thank you in advance

Answer: Maritime pine

Dear Gilberto,
Thank you for contacting us about the questions on your plants through the heading of ...
The Pino belongs to the botanical class of conifers, which includes over 600 species including the Maritime Pine (Pinus Pinaster) diffused mainly in the temperate-cold climatic zone.
This type of plant can be defined as rustic with respect to the soil because thanks to their great radical efficiency it can also develop on rocky and poor soils while it does not tolerate heavy and very humid soils.
Fertilization, for this type of plant, is wrongly considered not essential, therefore there are frequent situations of nutritional deficiencies, especially if the soils are alkaline and tenacious.
Eucalyptus, Eucaliptus globulus, belongs to the Mirtaceae family. It is an evergreen tree, up to 40 meters high in its natural habitat (the Australian regions). It has a globular crown and an erect, cylindrical trunk; arched branches with ramuli of quadrangular section, pendulous; smooth, greenish-gray bark that turns into strips that reveal the bottom of a light blue-pink color. The leaves are greenish-blue, hard and thick. The flowers are isolated or gathered, in the axil of the leaves, in small groups of 2 or 3. The fruits, which have a hemispherical shape, are woody capsules that contain the seeds.
The eucalyptus has flowering, in Italy, between May and July, it is grown in the central / southern regions because it will require full sun. The soils must be moderately fertile, draining and with good water availability.
The pruning of the Pine is never performed, at the limit the dry branches are thinned.
The eucalyptus must be pruned annually or periodically to provide the plant with a correct form of growth, with the topping of the branches it favors the obtaining of lateral shoots for more globose crown forms.

Introduction Maritime pine

The tree of which we speak in this long informative card is known and appreciated by adults and children: it is not the fir tree, but we miss it. In this card we speak indeed of the common pine, also known as pine, domestic pine or maritime pine. It is an indigenous species, that is well present in the Italian territory and perhaps native to our Peninsula. The domestic pine is frequently decorated during the Christmas season, which is why it is much loved by adults and children.


The maritime pine or domestic is an evergreen conifer, therefore a tree, belonging to the family of pinaceae. Its botanical name is pinus pinea L. The tree is native to southern Europe, perhaps just indigenous to Italy. Some specimens also grow in the Iberian peninsula, which includes Spain, Portugal, Gibraltar, Andorra and part of France. Some specimens are also cultivated in Great Britain. Maritime pine grows at altitudes between five hundred and one thousand meters. Difficult to find it in the north and in the cold areas, where some specimens grow only at heights not exceeding five hundred meters. In the Mediterranean and warm areas, on the other hand, the maritime pine creates pinewoods even at a thousand meters high. In these areas, the tree coexists peacefully even with some specimens of oaks.


The maritime pine shows a straight (or slightly curved) stem, twenty-five to thirty meters high. The bark of the tree is gray brown in young specimens and red with easily detachable plaques in mature specimens. The foliage, branched and very extended in the apical part, of dark green color, assumes a wide and umbrella shape in the mature specimens. The basal part of the same, however, remains more and more thin with respect to the apex.


The leaves of the domestic pine are actually pointed and leathery needles gathered in two, three or five bunches. These needles, from ten to twenty centimeters long, have a thickness of three millimeters and are quite hard and pungent to the touch. The main leaves, called "primary needles", are replaced, after four years, by other secondary needles that constitute the definitive crown of the adult plant. In the juvenile phase, in fact, the growth of the tree is rather fast and this involves a rapid replacement of juvenile shoots with adult ones.

Flowers and fruits

The flowers of the domestic pine do not present themselves as the others, for the neophytes they are even difficult to identify. In fact, the tree has both male and female inflorescences. The former are yellowish in color and located in the basal part of the foliage; the latter (female flowers) are collected in the apical part and have a reddish color. The male flowers have the anthers to produce pollen, while the female ones are actually known as "cones". The latter, protected by reddish scales, are ovoid strobili (pine cones) that contain seeds called "pine nuts". The pine nuts, the ones used to dress the Genoese pesto, are the seeds of the maritime pine. Each cone, which also represents the fruit or pseudo-fruit of the pine, contains only two seeds. The flowering of the maritime pine, or the opening of the cones, occurs in the month of May. The maritime pine bears fruit after the age of twenty. Starting from this age, the tree regularly bears fruit every three years and up to the age of eighty.


The maritime pine is particularly appreciated for its wood and its bark. These appear gray-brown in the young plant, while they become reddish in the more mature one. Pine timber is very heavy and resinous, with red-yellow heartwood and white-pink albumen. The rings of the trunk are very large and easily identifiable.


The root system of the maritime pine is quite robust. At the base, in fact, develops a taproot that can also reach and exceed one meter in length. The lateral extensions of the roots are clearly visible on the outside and at the base of the trunk. The roots of the maritime pine can easily penetrate into any type of soil, even absorbing all the nutrients, especially phosphorus. Due to the strength of the roots and branches, the domestic pine is used for reforestation operations and as a windbreak barrier.

Names and varieties

Maritime pine is also known as common pine, domestic pine, pine nut pine or simply pine. The scientific name, we have already said in a previous paragraph, и pinus pinea, which refers to the domestic pine, while the scientific name that refers to the maritime pine is pinus pinaster. In reality, the two species are identical and represent a single variety of tree, so much so that the domestic pine and the maritime pine now identify the same tree. There are no other varieties of common pine, also because the latter is a sub variety of pines. In fact, the pinaceae family includes other varieties of pine, including the already mentioned maritime pine, Scots pine, dune pine, Aleppo pine and bonsai pine. These pine varieties have different characteristics and habitats. However, there are Mediterranean varieties that can be assimilated to maritime pine because of their characteristics and their three-year fruiting cycle. These are Pinus torreyana, a native of California, Pinus leiophylla and Pinus chihuahuana, both of which come from Mexico.


The maritime pine adapts to any type of soil, as long as it is not too wet. The tree can root both on sandy and rocky terrain. The pines that grow on the rocks are called "rocky". Unlike the Scots pine, which prefers calcareous soils, the domestic pine likes slightly acid soils.

Exposure and temperature

The maritime pine should be exposed to full sun, rarely in partial shade. Partially shaded exposure is only possible in excessively hot climates. However, since it is a "heliophilous" plant that prefers the sun, it is better to opt for sunny exposure. The ideal temperature for maritime pine depends on humidity: if this is excessive, the tree can suffer even at temperatures above zero degrees; if the climate is dry, the plant can withstand temperatures well below zero. From a good Mediterranean plant, however, the maritime pine does not tolerate frost and snow. Frosts and heavy snowfalls can break its branches. The plant, on the other hand, tolerates the wind well.

First name

Common name maritime pine, pine, domestic pine, botanical name pinus pinea and pinus pinaster
Family Pinaceae
Gender conifers
Type of plant and growth habit Evergreen arboreal plant
Exposure Illuminated and in direct sunlight
Ground Slightly acidic, rocky or sandy as long as it is well drained
Morphology Trunk twenty-five to thirty meters high, dark green foliage expanded at the apex and sparse at the base
leaves Green needles grouped in bunches, dark green, pungent, leathery and ten to centimeter long
Flowers Apical, ovoid, red female inflorescences, protected by scales, called "cones" and containing seeds, and yellow basal male inflorescences containing anthers for pollination
Flowering May
fruits Pine nuts
Cultivation easy
Propagation seed

Manure and pruning

The maritime pine does not need to be fertilized or even pruned. When planting the young tree, the soil can only be fertilized with mature manure. Pruning, on the other hand, is not absolutely necessary. The maritime pine, in fact, needs to have a perfectly intact apical crown.


The domestic pine is not a plant that needs water. Usually, this tree knows how to use the rains very well and can withstand even long periods of drought. Only young plants need to be irrigated if the climate is too dry and too dry.


The common pine propagates only by seed. The seeds are planted in March, when the germination of the plant has already taken place. The development of the new plants is, however, difficult to achieve, if not too late. Before planting, the same plants should be grown in pots for several years. Alternatively you can try propagation by cuttings, to be carried out during the summer season.

Pests and diseases

The maritime pine is a tree that can be attacked by the larvae of a moth called a "processionary". These larvae cause complete defoliation of the tree. Another fearsome pine parasite is the "pine-bark cochineal of the maritime pine". This insect causes serious damage to the branches, the stem and the twigs with needles. In case of massive attack, the affected specimens must be completely uprooted and replaced by other plants. Sometimes, the maritime pine can also be attacked by the aphids of the cedar, insects that feed on the plant sap, depriving the plant of the energy needed to grow. The root system of the pine can also be attacked by fungi that develop in the event of water stagnation or too moist soil. Many specimens of domestic pine are also damaged by marine pollution. In particular, pine undergoes the action of surfactants and florides poured into the sea. These substances, by evaporating, pollute the atmosphere and are deposited in the needles of the tree. The first damages in the pine were observed starting from the 60's. In particular, the pine polluted by the florides shows a reddened and irregular crown.

History and meaning

The first specimens of pine discovered in antiquity, and precisely in ancient Greece, were consecrated to the goddess Rhea, called the "Great Mother". All pine trees express a meaning that is linked to immortality and perennial and lasting things. They are also joyful trees that together with the fir are richly decorated during the Christmas period. Pine also occupies a prominent place in legends and mythology. It is said, in fact, that, to escape the violence of the god Pan, the nymph Pitis chose to be transformed into a pine tree.

Maritime pine: Property

The gems and the resin extracted from the bark of the pine have been used for centuries in folk medicine. The gems are collected when they are still closed. Resin and gems of maritime pine have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, diuretic, balsamic and expectorant properties. Pine needles are still used to produce mattresses suitable for people suffering from rheumatism. These mattresses, mostly produced in Germany, are also called "forest wool".
  • Maritime pine

    The pines include a large number of species that present many differences between them. Almost all of them are large

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  • Maritime pines

    Hi, my name is Silvia, three pine trees have been in my garden for about 30 years and have been cut soltan

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  • Mediterranean pine

    Evergreen conifer, quite fast growing, the pinus pinea is native to the countries bordering on the mediterr

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  7. Gianni

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Main board of maritime pine varieties



Wood type
Pinus pinea20 - 30 msouthern EuropeBig rings
Pinus torreyana8 - 17 mCaliforniaBig rings
Pinus leiophylla20 - 30 mMexicoBig rings
Pinus chihuahuana10 - 15 m10 - 15 mBig rings