Pinus pinaster (pinheiro bravo) description

Conservation status

Pinus pinaster

Aiton 1789

Widespread names

Maritime pine, cluster pine [English]; pinheiro bravo [Portuguese]; pi marítim, pi pinastre [Catalan]; pino marítimo, pino resinero, pino rodeno [Spanish].

Taxonomic notes

The kind species of Pinus subgen. Pinus sect. Pinea subsect. Pinaster Loudon. Syn: P. maritima Lamarck 1778 (non Miller 1768), P. glomerata Salisbury 1796, P. laricio Savi 1798, P. escarena Risso 1826, P. hamiltonii Tenore 1845, P. mesogeensis Fieschi & Gaussen 1932 (Farjon 1998).

The species is typically cut up into two or three subspecies (Farjon 1998), however the variations are small (minor particulars of leaf anatomy) and poorly researched. For the reason that origin of the cultivated plant first described described by Aiton is unknown, the sort identify pinaster can not confidently be assigned to any subspecies (Greuter et al. 1984, Gaussen et al. 1993). Till a full examine of the species is finished, together with historic analysis into the fabric obtainable to Aiton and typification of the species identify, it’s best handled as monotypic (Worth et al. 1998). The related names are:

Pinus pinaster subsp. atlantica Villar. Atlantic coasts of SW Europe. Thought-about the sort by Grueter et al. (1984) and Farjon (1998).

Pinus pinaster subsp. escarena (Risso) Okay. Richter [syn. subsp. hamiltonii (Tenore) Villar]. Mediterranean coasts of SW Europe. Thought-about the sort by Gaussen et al. (1993).

Pinus pinaster subsp. renoui (Villar) Maire [syn. var. maghrebiana Villar]. Atlas Mts of NW Africa.


Tree to 30(-40) m, with a generally considerably sinuous stem (straight in some areas, notably Corsica and NW Africa) and a normally open crown of normal, candelabra-like upswept branches, broad ovoid-conic when younger, changing into irregular and denser with age. The bark may be very thick, scaly or plated, fissured, patterned red-brown, blackish and buff. Branching is usually uninodal, however often multinodal on vigorous younger timber. Shoots are stout, 7-15 mm thick, buff to yellow-brown, tough. Foliage buds are giant, cylindric to ovoid-acute, with red-brown scales having lengthy free suggestions, revolute, fringed with white hairs. Grownup leaves, retained 1.5-Three years, are 12-25 cm lengthy in fascicles of two (with some fascicles of three), with a persistent 2 cm sheath. They’re inexperienced to yellow-green, generally tinged glaucous, spreading, very stout, about 2-2.2 mm thick, with serrulate margins, and wonderful strains of stomata on all faces. Juvenile leaves are strongly glaucous, 3-6 cm lengthy, on slender (Three mm) shoots, and are grown for the primary 2-5 years of life. Cones are barely deflexed on brief stout stalks, symmetrical, laborious, heavy, ovoid-conic, (7-) 9-18 (-20) cm lengthy, 4-6 cm broad when closed, ripening wealthy shiny chestnut-brown in April two years after pollination, and opening the identical summer season or as much as 10 years later, to 7-11 cm broad. The scales are stout, thick, woody, and stiff; the apophysis is 10-16 × 18-26 mm broad, rhomboid, with a powerful raised transverse ridge; the umbo is dorsal, blackish gray, stout, 4-7 mm broad and three mm excessive. The seeds are shiny blackish brown above, matt gray beneath, 7-11 × 5 mm with an 18-25 × 10 mm wing, buff with quite a few straight darkish brown streaks, the wing simply faraway from the seed (Frankis, M.P., pers. comm. 1999.02.10).

Distribution and Ecology

Algeria, France (S of the Gironde and alongside the French Mediterranean coast; Corsica), Gibraltar, Italy (Sardinia; Sicily; the W coast), Malta, Monaco, Morocco, Portugal, Spain (Alicante. Balearic Islands. Barcelona. Castellón. Gerona. Lérida. Tarragona. Valencia), and Tunisia. In Europe at 0-400 m; to 900 m in Corsica and to 2000 m in Morocco (Frankis, M.P., pers. comm. 1999.02.10).

Bannister and Neuner (2001) describe it as hardy to Zone 8 (chilly hardiness restrict between -12.1°C and -6.7°C). Nonetheless, a common-garden experiment by Prada et al. (2017) discovered excessive intraspecific variation in cold-hardiness and different intraspecific traits: “Two continental Iberian populations confirmed excessive chilly tolerance and slower progress… The coastal populations displayed the alternative habits, whereas the continental Moroccan inhabitants offered a singular mixture of traits. We confirmed trade-offs between cold-hardiness and progress on the inhabitants stage, however not inside populations.”

Huge tree

The most important recorded specimen seems to have been 4.78 m in girth (152 cm dbh) when final measured in 2013; it grows close to Talayuela, Spain. The tallest is acknowledged to be precisely 30 m (laser measurement utilizing sine methodology) as of 2018 (Monumental Timber 2020.11.28). There’s a 2017 report of a 39.2 m tall tree close to Braga, Portugal (e mail, Dominique Beziat, 2020.11.29). The tallest ever recorded, in line with a chief technician of the Forests Nationwide Workplace (France), was a 42 m tall tree within the forest of the Landes (S.W. of France) that fell throughout a storm in December, 1999 (e mail, Dominique Beziat, 2020.11.28).



As of 1999.02, the species has been utilized in about 12 printed research, beginning in 1982. Half of those research have regarded on the species’ utility in reconstructing previous local weather variation, and a lot of the others have checked out ecological issues reminiscent of stand growth, productiveness, and the influence of insect defoliators.


The most important man-made forest on this planet, the 900,000 ha Les Landes on the Atlantic coast of SW France, is planted nearly fully with this species. This was initially planted (from 1789 onward) not for timber, however for land reclamation, with an enormous space of shifting sand dunes threatening fertile farmland futher inland (Frankis, M.P., pers. comm. 1999.02.10).

The species has been broadly planted in different components of the world with a Mediterranean local weather, and is now naturalised in South Africa and elsewhere (Worth et al. 1998); in recent times planting outdoors of Europe has declined significantly as P. radiata supplies bigger crops of higher high quality timber in the identical situations. P. radiata doesn’t nevertheless present the quantites of resin and turpentine, and P. pinaster continues to be a very powerful pine in Europe for resin manufacturing (Frankis, M.P., pers. comm. 1999.02.10).

The cones are broadly offered for Christmas decorations.




Aiton, W. 1789. Hortus Kewensis vol. 3, p. 367. Out there:, accessed 2011.05.21.

Gaussen, H., V.H. Heywood, and A.O. Chater. Pinus. In: T.G. Tutin et al. 1993 Flora Europaea 2nd version, Vol. 1. Cambridge.

Greuter, W., H.M. Burdet, and G. Lengthy. 1984. Med.Guidelines – A essential stock of vascular crops of the circum-mediterranean international locations, Vol. 1. Geneva.

Prada, Eva, José Climent, Ricardo Alía, and Raquel Díaz. 2016. Life-history correlations with seasonal chilly hardiness in maritime pine. American Journal of Botany 103(12):2126-2135.

This web page ready by M.P. Frankis, 1999.02.

See additionally

Elwes and Henry 1906-1913 on the Biodiversity Heritage Library. This collection of volumes, privately printed, supplies among the most participating descriptions of conifers ever printed. Though they solely deal with species cultivated within the U.Okay. and Eire, and the taxonomy is a bit dated, nonetheless these accounts are thorough, treating such subjects as species description, vary, varieties, exceptionally outdated or tall specimens, exceptional timber, and cultivation. Regardless of being over a century outdated, they’re usually correct, and are illustrated with some exceptional images and lithographs.

The species account at Threatened Conifers of the World.

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