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Western White Pine

Pinus monticola


Medium-sized near symmetrical tree with needle bundles in groups of 5. This is 1 of only 2 pines that have bundles of 5 in our region. The bark is smooth when young and scaly and darker as it ages. The needles are finely serrated and the pollen cone is yellow. I was hoping this was the more rare Whitebark Pine (endangered) but now think it is Western White Pine (near threatened). Photo 1 shows the position of the immature pollen cone amongst the needles, 2 shows the full tree, 3 shows the immature pollen one, 4 shows the bundles of 5 needles, which is diagnostic for both the Whitebark Pine and the Western White Pine.


Found beside the parking lot at the Heather Trail. Probably smaller here because of altitude. They can be found throughout the mountains of southern Vancouver Island and Southwestern BC right through to the mountains of central California as well as in the western Rockies in BC.


The endangered Whitebark Pine also is present in Manning Park in the subalpine, and I thought this was one until I got home and had a better look at my photos and the reference books. So I will have to go back again next year and try to find a Whitebark Pine now!

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British Columbia, Canada

Lat: 49.10, Long: -120.80

Spotted on Jul 13, 2016
Submitted on Jul 27, 2016

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