Pinus mugo

Mountain pine ( Pinus mugo )

The mountain pine ( Pinus mugo ) is a diverse genus of flowering plant in the pines ( Pinus ) in the family (Pinaceae ).

  • 7.1 Literature


The mountain pine occurs in at least three subspecies and other intermediate forms, which differ significantly in particular in their form or occurrence.

The sub- species form hybrids: they are thus connected hybridogen and there are a number of intermediate taxa.

Pinus mugo subsp. mugo ( dwarf pine, dwarf pine, stunted pine )

Pinus mugo subsp. called mugo, also flop, mountain pine (short -Flop ), mountain pine, dwarf pine, Legkiefer, mountain pine or stunted pine: This subspecies usually grows shrub -like plant height and reaches 1-3 m. It is characterized by their crooked growth with prostrate to arching, ascending stems and branches, they often form an impenetrable tangle ( Latschenfilz or Laces field). Strain the flop is long, but lies on the ground and is barely recognizable.

The main occurrence of mountain pine are in the Pyrenees, Alps, Erzgebirge, Carpathians, and the northern Apennines and the mountains of the Balkan Peninsula ( Balkan Mountains, Dinarides, Pirin, Rhodope Mountains ) at altitudes between 1,000 m and 2,700 m. In Austria it is often represented to Vienna and Burgenland in all provinces.

The mountain pine grows mainly in the subalpine krummholz zone of oceanic mountains, where it is associated with Alpine roses. In addition, they settled excessively dry, rocky, very wet, cold or snow destructive movements (avalanches ) embossed sites. Slippers can even colonize as green alder slopes on which often leave avalanches that destroy all other species completely. From favorable for tree growth locations Flop of more demanding and competitive there stronger climax tree species, such as the European beech is displaced, provided that the natural relations of competition are not distorted by deer browsing, grazing livestock, pasture and forestry or other human activities. As an ornamental tree it is often planted in gardens, where they are protected in captivity before competing tree species (primarily competition for light ), better thrive than in their natural habitat.

Pinus mugo subsp. uncinata ( Spirke, black pine, mountain pine Upright )

Pinus mugo subsp. called uncinata, also Spirke, hook jaw or Upright mountain pine. By some botanists it is regarded as a separate species Pinus uncinata. The Spirke grows tree-like plant height and reaches up to 25 meters.

The black pine comes in the Pyrenees, the Massif Central, the Swiss Jura, is present in the western and central Swiss Alps and in Wimbachtal. In the Jura, they settled altitudinal 500-1700 meters, in the Valais 900-2300 meters. The Spirke partially forms extensive pure stands, growing especially in the lower layers but also associated with larch, Arve and pine forest.

Pinus mugo subsp. rotundata ( Moorspirke )

Pinus mugo subsp. rotundata, also known as bog - mountain pine or peat Spirke, is in habit between the flop and the Spirke. Depending on the location it is similar with low-lying emerging branches for no apparent main stem of the Leg - pine or as an upright, often multi-stemmed tree of 8-10 meters of the hook jaw.

It comes in the Vosges, the Black Forest, the foothills of the Alps, the Bavarian Forest, South Bohemia, the Fichtelgebirge and Erzgebirge and in the Lausitz. The bog - wood Spirke is the montane zone and predominantly grows at altitudes 800-1200 m.

Needles, cones and seeds

The dark green, sharp needles are in pairs on short shoots and are up to 5 cm long. Their lifespan is 5 to 10 years.

The mountain pine is monoecious getrenntgeschlechtig ( monoecious ), so there are male and female cones on an individual before. The pollen are formed on the basis of long young shoots, instead of leafy short shoots in the axils of scale leaves.

The hard and egg-shaped female cones are recognized near the end of long young shoots. You are no longer than 10 mm, are pale pink to red and grow until the first autumn barely. In the second year they grow and mature; then they release the winged seeds. These are 4 to 5 mm in size. The ovules are sitting open on flaky carpels, and are therefore not included in an ovary ( Nacktsamer! ).

The seed cones are symmetrical; the Spirke has asymmetric pin. The power take-off shaft ( if any) is centered and straight, ie lying in the pin axis. The shield of the seed scales is mostly flat, rarely slightly arched to conical. The pins are between 3 and 7 cm long. The pins are opened, they reach a width of between 2 and 5 cm. In the heyday during the summer months of June and July, seed maturation follows in October. The development of the fruit over a period of three years.


The wood of the mountain pine is tough and difficult to split, that is, it has a good transverse strength and is very elastic. Due to its resin content, it exudes resin odor. It has a reddish core, which darkens on exposure to light and a bolt that is 2 to 4 cm wide and yellowish-white. Next are the typical soapy surface and relatively large branches of dark brown color.


The use of the timber is similar to that of the pine trees. Since the trunks and branches are not very thick, they are at most as Drechsler and carving wood recyclable as well as for simple furniture, as planed in the interior and exterior and in the window. Freshly cut sapwood is, however, very susceptible to blue stain.

From fresh needles, twigs and branches to win mountain pine oil for cosmetic products. In the distillery, the oil is obtained by steam distillation. As a finished mountain pine oil it can be naturally pure bottled and for sale. It is used for external and internal use with catarrh of the upper and lower airways. In medical baths, it is used to support the treatment of diseases of the rheumatic diseases in the non- acute stage.


  • Pinus mugo ( mountain pine ) - broadly conical habit, 4-5 m tall, versatile, also for privacy protection
  • Pinus mugo ' alpine dwarf ' - conical, compact, slow growth, to 1.5 m high, for troughs and small gardens
  • Pinus mugo ' Gnom ' - densely branched, upright and slow-growing form, to 3 m tall, densely packed needles
  • Pinus mugo ' Henry ' - decidedly zwergiger and slow growth, dense and globose, up to 40 cm high and 50 cm wide, very short distances between the branches, annual growth only 1-3 cm, for the smallest spatial relations
  • Pinus mugo ' Humpy ' - wide cushion-shaped, compact growth habit, to 30 cm high and 100 cm wide, very short, densely packed needles, small space conditions
  • Pinus mugo ' Mops ' - spherical growth, to 1.5 m high, slow-growing, well-suited for troughs
  • Pinus mugo mughus ( mountain pine ) - less strong, but broader than growing Pinus mugo, 2-3 m high and wide to cover and as low privacy
  • Pinus mugo pumilio ( Kriechföhre ) - thicker and slower growth, also wide and decumbent, to 80 cm high and 150 cm wide, for small spaces
  • Pinus mugo 'Winter Gold' - a broad bushy growth, to 80 cm high and 120 cm wide, slightly yellow needles in summer and in winter golden brown.


In northern locations, for too long snow cover, the very Flop by the fungus Herpotrichia nigra ( Black snow mold ) is damaged ( blackish, glued together needle tufts ) and replaced by the green alder.

The elastic branches are exquisitely adapted to the winter snow pressure of high altitudes.

Pinus mugo subsp. mugo, dwarf pine in the garden.

Pinus mugo subsp. mugo, dwarf pine in the garden.

Pinus mugo: Young stud

Pinus mugo


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

Pictures of Pinus mugo