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Trees of Iowa: An Interactive Key

Scotch Pine
(Pinus sylvestris)


Leaves are alternate, simple, double-toothed with unequal leaf bases.

Scotch Pine Form

The Scotch pine is not native to Iowa. It is a European species that was brought to this country by the English.  It has been planted widely in Iowa, both for farmstead windbreaks and ornamental use.  It is a fast-growing tree in early life, but most strains of it soon slow down in height growth and develop a flat, wide spreading top of gnarled and crooked branches.  Scotch pine grows 50 to 75 feet tall.

Hardiness: zones 3a through 7 Not heat tolerant

Growth Rate:
moderate

Mature Shape:
Irregular pyramidal. Scotch Pines look like other Pines when young, but as they age they can take on many different shapes.

Height:
30 to 60 feet

Width:
20 to 40 feet

Site Requirements:
Sandy and well-drained soils. Poor, dry sites will support this tree. Full sun.

Flowering Dates: May - June

Seed Dispersal Dates: December - March

Seed Bearing Age: 5 to 15 years

Seed Bearing Frequency: Every 4 to 6 years

Seed Stratification:
Scotch Pine FlowersScotch Pine Leaves

The 1-1/2 to 3 inch long, bluish needles occur in bundles of two and are twisted or spiral as they leave the twig.

The cone is small, 1 to 1-1/2 inches in length and sometimes remain on the trees for many years. The branching of the tree is quite open and the branches appear sparse.

Scotch Pine TwigsScotch Pine Fruit

At the base of older trunks the bark is grayish brown to brownin color, but on the upper trunk and larger branches the bark is bright orange and flaky, with the outer bark peeling off in large scales.

Scotch Pine is no longer recommended for long term planting because of Pine Wilt Nematode. 

 

Click on a thumbnail image below to view a larger picture.
Scotch Pine Bark Scotch Pine Flowers Scotch Pine Fruit Scotch Pine Twigs Scotch Pine Flowers Scotch Pine Flowers Scotch Pine Fruit Scotch Pine Flowers Scotch Pine Form Scotch Pine Twig Scotch Pine Fruit Scotch Pine Leaves Scotch Pine Flowers