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Pinus contorta var. murrayana (Grev. & Balf.) Engelm.
Sierra lodgepole pine, Lodgepole pine
Synonyms: Pinus murrayana
USDA Symbol: PICOM
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Sierra Lodgepole Pine (Pinus contorta var. murrayana (Grev. & Balf.) Engelm.), of the Cascade Mountains of southwestern Washington and western Oregon, the Sierra Nevada of central California, south to northern Baja California, is a tall (70-80 ft.), narrow tree with thin, scaly bark; relatively broad, yellowish green to dark green needles that are twisted; and symmetrical, lightweight cones opening at maturity and shedding within a few years. It is a variety of Pinus contorta. It can take several years for the cones to reach maturity and open. The crown will be especially narrow if the tree is growing in crowded, forest conditions. With more space, the crown will enlarge and appear heavier and more open and spreading.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Tree Leaf Complexity: Simple Leaf Shape:
Fruit: Size Class:
CA , NV , OR , WA Native Distribution:
Interior mts. from CA & the Rockies, n. to AK Native Habitat:
Dry, mt. slopes & meadows from 5000-11,000 ft. USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Well-drained, sandy or gravelly soils.
Conditions Comments: This species often forms dense stands after a fire. It must have plenty of rainfall, snow on the ground for several months, and no summer heat.
Sow fresh, untreated seed in late fall. Seedlings have a better survival rate if planted in containers instead of directly into the field. Seed Collection:
Collect cones from vigorous trees in late summer and fall just before they completely open to drop seeds. Spread cones on racks to dry so they will release seeds. Cones may be shaken to release seeds. Store at a moisture content of 5-10 %
fresh weight. Seed Treatment:
Fresh seeds require no treatment; stored seeds need 1 month stratification. Commercially Avail:
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Native Seed Network
- Corvallis, OR
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Record Modified: 2013-04-10
Research By: TWC Staff