Monterey Pine

Pinus radiata D. Don

Order: Coniferales

Family: Pinaceae

Names:

Pinus
Radiata
Monterey Pine

Other Names

Radiata Pine

Summary:

Pines are tall evergreen trees to 40 m high with rough and ridged brown bark and spirally arranged branches. The leaves are needle-like, in groups of three, 80-150 mm long, arising from the axils of basal scale leaves, the needle-like leaves and scale leaves fall together as a unit. The young shoots are greenish. The inflorescence consists of separate male and female cones, both on the same tree. The male cones are small and spike-like with numerous tiny bracts each having 2 pollen sacs. The female cones are larger with numerous larger bracts each with 2 ovules. The fruiting cones are large and woody, more or less egg shaped and 70-250 mm long, they take 1-2 years to mature and eventually open to release the small winged seeds. Male cones are on the side and female cones on the ends of shoots.
It is widely planted for timber and are now naturalised along roadsides and in bushland near plantations or old settlements. Pollen is shed in spring.

Description:

Cotyledons:

Several.

Leaves:

Long shoots with scale like leaves and short shoots, spirally arranged, arising from the axils of the scales and bearing sets of 3, green, needle like leaves, 80-150 mm long x 2 mm diameter, crowded, pointed tip. Complete shoots fall at maturity. Winter buds 12-18 mm long, cylindrical, resinous with closely appressed scales. Young shoots greenish.
Blade - Needle like, surrounded by sheathing scales at the base.

Stems:

Dark brown, up to 40 metres tall, resinous. Bark rough and deeply ridged and thick on old trees.
Sapwood is non porous.

Flower head:

On each tree there are both male and female cones with spirally arranged scales. Cone scales have a rounded conical projection and a tiny prickle on the back. The male cones are small and spike-like with numerous tiny bracts each having 2 pollen sacs (sporangia) on the lower surface. The female cones are larger with numerous larger bracts each with 2 ovules. They are egg shaped to conic, stalkless on the ends, in groups of 1-3 and occasionally many, light brown, 70-250 mm long x 50-80 mm diameter, symmetrical except at the base, shiny, persistent and becoming woody with age and eventually opening to release the seed. Male cones replace short shoots at the base of the new years growth. Female cones replace long shoots and take 1-2 years to mature and eventually open to release the small winged seeds. Male cones are on the side and female cones on the ends of shoots. Cone scales produce 2 seeds on the upper surface.

Flowers:

There are separate male and female cones on the same plant.
Pollen wind borne

Fruit:

Seeds:

7 mm long with a 20 mm wing.

Roots:

Key Characters:

Leaves in threes, needle like, 80-150 mm long and green.
Branches spirally arranged.
Young shoots green.
Cones asymmetrical, ovoid.
Perennial tree to 40 m tall with rough bark.
From E.M. Bennett, J.M. Black and John Moore.

Biology:

Life cycle:

Evergreen perennial tree. It produces it first seeds when 5-7 years old.

Physiology:

Reproduction:

By seed.

Flowering times:

Pollen shed in September to October in WA

Seed Biology and Germination:

Vegetative Propagules:

None. Occasionally coppices.

Hybrids:

Population Dynamics and Dispersal:

Spread mainly by intentional planting of seedlings. Seed is retained in the canopy and is dispersed by wind. The seed has a medium longevity.

Origin and History:

California. North America.

Distribution:

ACT, NSW, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC, WA.

Courtesy Australia's Virtual Herbarium.

Habitats:

Climate:

Temperate. Mediterranean.

Soil:

Plant Associations:

Significance:

Beneficial:

Used for resins, timber production, shelter and wind breaks. Traditional Christmas tree. Pollen source. Ornamental.

Detrimental:

Weed of plantations, roadsides and disturbed areas.

Toxicity:

Not recorded as toxic.

Legislation:

None.

Management and Control:

Monterey pine is included in the 5 most invasive Pinus species and volunteers around plantations may require control.

Thresholds:

Eradication strategies:

Herbicide resistance:

Biological Control:

Related plants:

Aleppo Pine (Pinus halepensis)
Canary Island Pine (Pinus canariensis)
Caribbean Pine (Pinus caribaea)
Loblolly Pine (Pinus taeda)
Maritime Pine (Pinus pinaster) has needle-like leaves in pairs, 50-300 mm long, the young shoots yellowish brown and is native to southern Europe.
Monterey Pine (Pinus radiata) has needle-like leaves in threes, 80-150 mm long, the young shoots greenish and is native to California.
Patula Pine (Pinus patula)
Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa)
Stone Pine (Pinus pinea)
Slash Pine (Pinus elliottii)

Plants of similar appearance:

Possibly confused with Callitris (Rottnest Island Pine), but Callitris is a smaller tree to 6 m high, its leaves only obvious in young shoots as they become fused to the stem with age leaving only small scale-like tips free. The cones are also smaller, 25-35 mm long and globular.

References:

Black, J.M. (1965). Flora of South Australia. (Government Printer, Adelaide, South Australia). P68.

Hussey, B.M.J., Keighery, G.J., Cousens, R.D., Dodd, J. and Lloyd, S.G. (1997). Western Weeds. A guide to the weeds of Western Australia. (Plant Protection Society of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia). P14.

Lazarides, M. and Hince, B. (1993). CSIRO handbook of economic plants of Australia. (CSIRO, Melbourne). #979.7.

Marchant et al (1987). Flora of the Perth Region. (Western Australian Herbarium, Department of Agriculture, Western Australia). P58.

Acknowledgments:

Collated by HerbiGuide. Phone 08 98444064 or www.herbiguide.com.au for more information.