Jack Pine (Pinus banksiana)

Jack Pine (Pinus banksiana)

The Jack Pine (Pinus banksiana), also called Scrub Pine or Gray Pine, is a conifer evergreen tree or shrub in the Pine Family (Pinaceae).The family and genus names come from the Latin for "pine." The species name is in honor of Sir Joseph Banks, a British botanist. It is only occasionally found in the area of Mount Desert Island and none have been identified in the immediate vicinity of French Hill Pond. The photographs on this page were taken on the Schoodic Peninsular part of Acadia National Park. Native Americans used the wood from this tree for framing their canoes. Currently, these trees are used for pulpwood, posts, poles and railroad ties.

This tree can grow to 65 feet (20 meters) with an irregular shape and crown. The leaves are broad, evergreen needles from ¾ to 1½ inches (2 to 3¾ centimeters) long in fascicles (bundles) of two. These pairs are twisted and divergent. The branches and twigs turn from yellow or reddish brown to gray brown with age. The bark is dark, thin and scaly developing scaly ridges with age. The buds on this tree produce a great deal of resin.

Jack Pine (Pinus banksiana) Detail

The yellowish cones are 1¼ to 2 inches (3 to 5 centimeters) long, curved and pointed. the cones remain on the tree for several years. The winged seeds are small and brown to black. There are 131,040 seeds to a pound (0.45 kilograms).

Jack Pine (Pinus banksiana) Cone

The minimum root depth is 20 inches (51 centimeters). Look for this tree in sandy soils and on rock outcroppings.


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