Pinus montezumae Lamb.

Montezuma Pine

A variable broadly domed tree to about 25 m tall. Branches curved upwards. Bark fissured, reddish. Buds to 2.5 cm long, ovoid with fringed scales. Young shoots thick, rough scaly, brownish. Leaves mostly in 5's, occasionally from 4 to 6, mostly 15-30 cm long, dark green, very thin to stout, often drooping; sheaths persistent 1-1.5 cm long. Cones more or less conic, 12-20 cm long, reddish brown. Seed 8 mm long with short wing 1.5-2 cm long.

Occasionally offered in the nursery trade for its highly ornamental leaves. Mature trees extremely rare.

Mexico where it is extremely variable in the wild, growing in tropical and temperate montane regions at altitude 1500-4000 m.

Large, fringed buds; long slender leaves with persistent sheaths. Easily confused with P. pseudostrobus Lindl., Smooth-branched Mexican Pine which has thinner leaves, smooth bark, ovoid cones 7-16 cm long and waxy young shoots; and P. devoniana Lindl. (P. michoacana Martínez), Michoacan pine with rough thick shoots 2 cm thick and long leaves 25-48 cm long and larger cones 17-30 cm long. Both the latter trees are highly ornamental and likely to be more widely grown in the future.

VIC: Melbourne (Royal Bot. Gds, conifer border, ptd c. 1975, possible hybrid).

Source: Spencer, R. (1995). Pinaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 1, Ferns, conifers & their allies. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Pinopsida
order     Pinales
family      Pinaceae
genus       Pinus L.