Coulter pine

Coulter Pine ( Pinus coulteri ) with cones.

The Coulter Pine ( Pinus coulteri ) is a plant of the genus pine in the pine family ( Pinaceae ).


The Coulter pine is native to the southwest of California and in the extreme northern Mexico in lower dry locations. It is little hardy in Central Europe; in Germany it grows only in a few copies in the warmest areas, such as the Rhine Valley.


The Coulter pine grows as evergreen tree that can reach heights of growth of up to 28 meters and trunk diameter of about 1 meter. Your bark is black to gray- brown with a slight purple tinge; it forms thick strips or large plates between which gape wide, deep cracks. Young trees have a light gray, already significantly cracked bark.

The treetop grows wide. The crown of young trees is easy with just a few, at the ends upward branches. Mature trees have long, slightly drooping branches.

The branches are very thick and furrowed. The bark of young branches is bluish to bluish white, later red-brown. The long inner part of the branch is unbenadelt and there has only brown narrow scales on. The buds are bright orange, thick, tapering to a point and up to 5 inches long. The blue- green needles are in clusters of three and are very thick and stiff; they are 25 to 30 inches long.

The male cones are formed on 6 to 12 inches long at the bottom part of the new branches; they are thick egg-shaped, purplish-pink long ( during the Stäubens about the beginning of June yellowish) and about 2 centimeters. The cones grow on the top crown tip; they are massive, elongated oval and the heaviest of all species of pine: The cones are 20 to 35 inches long and weigh up to 2 kg, sometimes up to 3 kg. The base of the pin is wrong; the scales are light brown; their thick ends run into very sharp thorn hooks made of up to 2 cm in length that are upstanding, upwardly curved; only some basic scales are notwithstanding this, bent downward.

Demarcation with similar types

Jeffrey pine has much smaller cones that bear especially much shorter spines on the scales. Pinus Sabiniana has similar pins, which are also smaller, and the pins are curved downward to all the scales.


Due to the huge pin the Coulter pine in California is also big- cone pine called ( " Großzapfige pine " ) or widowmaker ( " Widowmaker ").


  • Description and taxonomy of the species at The Gymnosperm Database. (English )