Pines (Pinus spp.) The
members of the genus Pinus are readily separated from
all other conifers by their resin canals, which have thin-walled
epithelium cells. Specific identification is generally not possible,
however, the genus can be subdivided into five groups on the basis
of the ray tracheids and the type of cross-field pitting.
word pinus is the classical Latin name. The name strobus
is the Latin name for pine cone, from the Greek strobos (whirling
around) and strobilos (pine cone). The species Pinus strobus is
composed of two varieties; the typical Eastern White Pine (Pinus
strobus var. strobus L.) and Chiapas White Pine (Pinus strobus
var. chiapensis Martinez [P. chiapensis (Martinez) Andresen]),
native to the mountains of southern Mexico and Guatemala.
white pine (Pinus strobus) grows in eastern North
America from southeast Canada to South Carolina in the U.S., and
west to Minnesota. The tree can attain heights of 100 feet, with
diameters of 4-5 feet. During the Colonial Period in the U.S.,
many of the large Eastern white pines that grew along the Atlantic
coast were used as ship masts. The wood of Pinus strobus (Eastern
white pine) has white sapwood and light brown heartwood. It (like
other softwoods) has a texture or feel that is smooth (as opposed
to coarse), with a grain that is even and straight. It is medium
in strength and works well for most applications. Its uses include
casting patterns, containers, doors, furniture, inexpensive caskets,
knotty paneling, packaging, window sashes and trim.
Click here to view a chart of Key: Softwoods.
The word pinus is the classical Latin name and taeda means resinous.
Loblolly pine is one of the fastest growing southern pines.
This species is native to the Coastal Plain
and Piedmont, from southern New Jersey and Delaware south to central
Florida and west to eastern Texas. It also grows in the Mississippi
Valley to extreme southeastern Oklahoma, central Arkansas, and
southern Tennessee. Loblolly pine can reach heights of 150 ft
(45.72 m), and diameters of 5 ft (1.52 m).
Loblolly pine sapwood is a yellowish white,
with heartwood of reddish brown. The sapwood is usually wide in
second-growth stands. Heartwood begins to form when the tree is
about 20 years old. In old, slow-growth trees, sapwood may be
only 1 to 2 in. (2.54 to 5.08 m) in width. Moderately high in
shock resistance, the wood of loblolly pine is very heavy and
strong, very stiff, and hard, straight-grained with a medium texture.
While the heartwood is moderate to low in decay resistance, the
sapwood is more easily impregnated with preservatives. The dense,
high strength lumber of southern pines is used extensively for
stringers in building construction, roof trusses, beams, posts,
joists, and piles. Lower density and strength lumber is used as
interior finish, sheathing, subflooring, and joists, and boxes,
pallets, and crates.
here to view a chart of Key: Softwoods.
The taxonomic name for the Virginia pine comes from the Latin
word pinus and the word virginiana meaning “of
Virginia.” Virginia pine is southern pine classified as
a "minor species" in the grading rules. Virginia pine
is native to southeastern New York (Long Island) and New Jersey,
west to Pennsylvania, central Ohio, and southern Indiana, south
to western Kentucky, western Tennessee, and Northeastern Mississippi,
and east to central Alabama, northern Georgia, northern South
Carolina, and Virginia. typically reaching heights of 80 ft (24.38
m), and diameters of 2 ft (0.61 m), a record Virginia pine was
measured at a height of 114 ft (34.75 m), with a diameter of 32
in. (0.81 m).
The heartwood of Virginia pine, which if slightly
resistant to nonresistant to decay, is orange, and the sapwood
nearly white and relatively wide. Virginia pine is moderate in
weight, strength, hardness and stiffness, with moderately high
shrinkage and shock resistance. It is used for lumber, pulpwood,
rough construction railroad cross ties, mine timbers and fuel.
Characteristics found in the Pines (Pinus spp.):
- Ray tracheids non-dentate.
- Cross-field pitting 1-2 large, simple or nearly so
- White Pine Group [Eastern white pine (P. strobus L.)]
- Ray tracheids dentate to reticulate.
- Cross-field pitting 1-6 pinoid.
- Yellow Pine Group [Eastern and southern species,
principally jack pine (P. banksiana Lamb.);
slash pine (P. elliottii Engelm.); longleaf
pine (P. palustris Mill.); shortleaf pine
(P. echinata Mill.) and loblolly pine (P.
|1 — 2, Large
||White Pine Group
||Red Pine Group
| 1 — 6, Pinoid
||Yellow Pine Group
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