What You Need To Know About The Eastern White Pine

The Eastern White Pine is the state tree of Michigan, but we’ve found that most residents don’t actually know much about this beautiful tree. The Eastern White Pine is a special tree and can be easily identified in the wild.

For more information about our state tree, read on!

What Does An Eastern White Pine Look Like?

  • Thin needles grow in clusters of five
  • Bark starts smooth and grows rougher
  • Long, thin cones

The Eastern White Pine is a stand-out beauty and iconic symbol of the wilderness. When it is young, the smooth bark and long needles give it a distinctive look. As it ages and the bark starts to deepen and get “cracks,” it becomes a stately addition to any home.

The white pine can grow to over 150 feet tall and can live for up to 200 years, according to The University Of Maine. It is a fast growing tree, so you will be able to plant it and reap the benefits in just a few years. It has a fairly large umbrella and serves as a home for many different forest dwellers.

Why We Love The Eastern White Pine

  • Easy to grow
  • Extremely hardy
  • Grows very quickly

We love the Eastern Pine for many reasons. Not only is it our state tree, but it’s a hardy tree, too. It will flourish in many different situations and has the internal structures to stand up to different types of climates, bad weather, drought, environmental stressors, pollution, and more. It is the type of tree that gets used in many parks and commercial locations because of just how hardy it is. It has some wildlife credibility as well, attracting black bears, rabbits, red squirrels, and many birds.

Of course, we also love that it is used as a Christmas tree for many homes, according to the Arbor Day Foundation.

How To Plant An Eastern White Pine

  • Be sure to get the right kind
  • Thoroughly saturate the ground before planting
  • Be sure to test your soil first

If you are going to plant an Eastern White Pine in your yard, there are some things you will need to take into consideration. The first is that you need to know the pH level of your soil. Eastern white pines love soil with an acidity level of 6.5 or lower. While this tree is really hardy, the younger trees are a bit more susceptible to damage.

You may need to prop up the tree and help to train it so that it stays in the ground. You don’t want to plant it too deeply, but if you plant it too shallow you may have some issues with rooting. You will want to have enough space to plant it as everything about this tree spreads out, including the limbs, the roots, and the crown, according to the Morton Arboretum.

As with any tree, you will have to monitor this tree for a few years to ensure that it is getting established correctly. The good news is that it almost always does and once it is in, all goes smoothly.

Some Considerations Of Planting An Eastern White Pine

  • One of the tallest trees
  • Tend to be dangerous in small yards
  • Perfect for shade and windbreaks

If you are going to plant this tree around your business or home, there are some things that you will want to take into consideration. These trees are tall and can be a bit wily when they are confronted with bad weather.

According to The Spruce, “Large Eastern white pine trees just don’t mix well, in the wintertime, with wires, driveways, and houses. When dumped upon with heavy loads of snow or ice, their evergreen foliage holds an enormous amount of the frozen precipitation—too much for their relatively weak limbs to bear. The result is that the limbs come crashing down, taking out whatever’s under them.”

They are also messy at times, with needles and cones that fall that aren’t quick to decompose. This will add to your yard maintenance needs at certain times of the year, particularly autumn.

There are some pests and blights that this tree can get as well. While you will need to treat them, these problems don’t often end the lives of the trees. Instead, you will just need to monitor them.

How To Include An Eastern White Pine In Your Yard

Credit: Dan Keck
  • Make sure you have enough room
  • Use them in areas where you want shade
  • Good for windbreaks

If you are looking for a tree that will add some visual interest in different seasons, then the Eastern White Pine is a great choice for your yard. You will want to have a lot of space for it to grow, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have other gardens and plants around. It is suggested that you put the tree in the ground first and then work on the gardens and other landscaping.

One word of caution is that you shouldn’t plant this tree around wires, buildings, or hardscaping that it can destroy. The root systems need to be monitored as does growth. Some maintenance and trimming will help the tree to stay within the boundaries that you want.

According to the Missouri Botanical Garden, “An excellent specimen tree for lawns or parks. Site in areas with adequate space to accommodate future growth. May be planted as a hedge and sheared regularly to control growth.”

Want to plant this beautiful tree in your yard? Need help with maintenance? If you believe that you have a problem with the trees or in your yard, give us a call today at (269) 216-6811. We’d love to chat about how we can help you. There is no job too big or too small – contact our professionals today!

Header photo courtesy of Dan Keck on Flickr!

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