Articles on this page are available in 1 other language: Spanish (9) (learn more)

Overview

Distribution

National Distribution

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Coulter pine occurs from Contra Costa County, California, south through
the Coastal, Transverse, and Peninsular ranges to the Mexican border
[10,34,35,39,41,55]. It is cultivated in Hawaii [58].
  • 41. Munz, Philip A. 1973. A California flora and supplement. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 1905 p. [6155]
  • 35. Little, Elbert L., Jr. 1979. Checklist of United States trees (native and naturalized). Agric. Handb. 541. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 375 p. [2952]
  • 10. Critchfield, William B.; Little, Elbert L., Jr. 1966. Geographic distribution of the pines of the world. Misc. Publ. 991. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 97 p. [20314]
  • 34. Little, Elbert L., Jr. 1975. Rare and local conifers in the United States. Conservation Research Rep. No. 19. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 25 p. [15691]
  • 39. Minnich, Richard A. 1987. The distribution of forest trees in northern Baja California, Mexico. Madrono. 34(2): 98-127. [6985]
  • 55. Zobel, Bruce. 1953. Geographic range and intraspecific variation of Coulter pine. Madrono. 11(8): 285-316. [21797]
  • 58. St. John, Harold. 1973. List and summary of the flowering plants in the Hawaiian islands. Hong Kong: Cathay Press Limited. 519 p. [25354]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Regional Distribution in the Western United States

More info on this topic.

This species can be found in the following regions of the western United States (according to the Bureau of Land Management classification of Physiographic Regions of the western United States):

3 Southern Pacific Border

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Occurrence in North America

CA HI

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Morphology

Description

Trees to 24m; trunk to 1m diam., straight to contorted; crown broad, thin, irregular. Bark dark gray-brown to near black, deeply furrowed, with long, scaly, irregularly anastomosing, rounded ridges. Branches often ascending; twigs stout to moderately slender, violet-brown, often glaucous, aging gray-brown, rough. Buds ovoid, deep red-brown, 1.5(--3)cm, resinous; scale margins white-fringed, apex cuspidate. Leaves 3 per fascicle, slightly spreading, not drooping, mostly ascending in a brush, persisting 3--4 years, 15--30cm ´ ca. 2mm, slightly curved or straight, twisted, dusty gray-green, all surfaces with pale, fine stomatal lines, margins serrulate, apex abruptly subulate; sheath 2--4cm, base persistent. Pollen cones ovoid to cylindric, to 25mm, light purple-brown, aging orange-brown. Seed cones maturing in 2 years, gradually shedding seeds thereafter and moderately persistent, massive, heavy, drooping, asymmetric at base, narrowly ovoid before opening, ovoid-cylindric when open, 20--35cm, pale yellow-brown, resinous, stalks to 3cm; apophyses transverse-rhombic, strongly and sharply cross-keeled, elongate, curved, continuous with umbos to form long, upcurved claws 2.5--3cm. Seeds obovoid; body 15--22mm, dark brown; wing to 25mm. 2 n =24.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Boulevard, St. Louis, MO, 63110 USA

Source: Missouri Botanical Garden

Trusted

Article rating from 1 person

Average rating: 4.0 of 5

Description

Coulter pine is a native evergreen conifer that lives up to 100 years of
age [23]. It attains a height of 30 to 83 feet (9-25 m) and a d.b.h.
of 12 to 31 inches (30-80 cm) [23,29,31,41]. The bark is thick and
roughly furrowed at maturity [29,36,38]. The crown is pyramidal and may
be dense or open, depending upon the site [23,38,41]. Needles occur in
groups of three and are 6 to 12 inches (15-30 cm) long [29,41,50]. The
massive, spiny cones are 9 to 15 inches (24-40 cm) long, occurring in
whorls of four [29,41]. Young trees first bear cones on the trunk. As
trees mature, cones are also borne on strong branches [7].

Although geographically isolated, nine Coulter pine populations were
very similar in all of three morphological characteristics studies.
Oleoresins (volatile portion) were also similar [55].
  • 41. Munz, Philip A. 1973. A California flora and supplement. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 1905 p. [6155]
  • 50. Van Dersal, William R. 1938. Native woody plants of the United States, their erosion-control and wildlife values. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture. 362 p. [4240]
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 23. Horton, Jerome S. 1949. Trees and shrubs for erosion control of southern California mountains. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 29. Krochmal, Arnold; Krochmal, Connie. 1982. Uncultivated nuts of the United States. Agriculture Information Bulletin 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 89 p. [1377]
  • 31. Krugman, Stanley L.; Jenkinson, James L. 1974. Pinaceae--pine family. In: Schopmeyer, C. S., technical coordinator. Seeds of woody plants in the United States. Agric. Handb. 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: 598-637. [1380]
  • 36. McCune, Bruce. 1988. Ecological diversity in North American pines. American Journal of Botany. 75(3): 353-368. [5651]
  • 38. Minnich, Richard A. 1980. Wildfire and the geographic relationships between canyon live oak, Coulter pine, and bigcone Douglas-fir forests. In: Plumb, Timothy R., technical coordinator. Proceedings of the symposium on the ecology, management and utilization of California oaks; 1979 June 26-28; Claremont, CA. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-44. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 55-61. [7015]
  • 55. Zobel, Bruce. 1953. Geographic range and intraspecific variation of Coulter pine. Madrono. 11(8): 285-316. [21797]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Tree, Evergreen, Monoecious, Habit erect, Trees without or rarely having knees, Tree with bark rough or scaly, Young shoots 3-dimensional, Buds resinous, Leaves needle-like, Leaves alternate, Needle-like leaf margins finely serrulate (use magnification or slide your finger along the leaf), Leaf apex acute, Leaves > 5 cm long, Leaves > 10 cm long, Leaves grey-green, Leaves not blue-green, Needle-like leaves triangular, Needle-like leaves twisted, Needle-like leaf habit erect, Needle-like leaves per fascicle mostly 3, Needle-like leaf sheath persistent, Twigs glabrous, Twigs viscid, Twigs not viscid, Twigs without peg-like projections or large fascicles after needles fall, Berry-like cones orange, Woody seed cones > 5 cm long, Seed cones bearing a scarlike umbo, Umbo with obvious prickle, Bracts of seed cone included, Seeds brown, Seeds winged, Seeds unequally winged, Seed wings narrower than body.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

Stephen C. Meyers

Source: USDA NRCS PLANTS Database

Trusted

Article rating from 1 person

Average rating: 1.0 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
In California, Coulter Pine is prominent in the southern California Mixed Conifer Forest, especially at the lower limit of this forest type, where it merges into fire-prone chaparral. In Baja California it is also a tree of mixed chaparral, together with Quercus chrysolepis, or growing on granite boulder formations around Laguna Juárez. Its altitudinal range is from 300 m to 2,100 m a.s.l. (in Mexico 1,200-2,150 m). It is most commonly found on dry, rocky slopes and ridges, where competition from other trees is minimized. The climate is of a Mediterranean type with winter rain and long, hot and dry summers. Phenology: pollen dispersal occurs in May-June

Systems
  • Terrestrial
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Habitat characteristics

More info for the term: serpentine soils

Coulter pine occurs in a mediterranean climate. Winter rains are
infrequent, and the summer is dry with occasional summer thunderstorms
[37,40,52].

Coulter pine is most frequent on steep south-facing slopes and ridges
[4,22,52]. Soils may be poor to fertile, and are typically dry.
Coulter pine is an indicator of serpentine soils, but also occurs on a
variety of other substrates. Soils range from loamy to gravelly or
rocky in texture [22,29,30]. Coulter pine occurs between 500 to 7,000
feet (150-2,120 m) elevation [47,55].
  • 40. Minnich, R.; Howard, L. 1984. Biogeography and prehistory of shrublands. In: DeVries, Johannes J., ed. Shrublands in California: literature review and research needed for management. Contribution No. 191. Davis, CA: University of California, Water Resources Center: 8-24. [4998]
  • 4. Barbour, Michael G. 1988. Californian upland forests and woodlands. In: Barbour, Michael G.; Billings, William Dwight, eds. North American terrestrial vegetation. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press: 131-164. [13880]
  • 22. Holland, Robert F. 1986. Preliminary descriptions of the terrestrial natural communities of California. Sacramento, CA: California Department of Fish and Game. 156 p. [12756]
  • 29. Krochmal, Arnold; Krochmal, Connie. 1982. Uncultivated nuts of the United States. Agriculture Information Bulletin 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 89 p. [1377]
  • 30. Kruckeberg, Arthur R. 1984. California serpentines: flora, vegetation, geology, soils and management problems. Publications in Botany Volume 48. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 180 p. [12482]
  • 37. Minnich, Richard A. 1976. Vegetation of the San Bernardino Mountains. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 99-124. [4232]
  • 47. Thorne, Robert F. 1976. The vascular plant communities of California. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 1-31. [3289]
  • 52. Vogl, Richard J. 1976. An introduction to the plant communities of the Santa Ana and San Jacinto Mountains. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 77-98. [4230]
  • 55. Zobel, Bruce. 1953. Geographic range and intraspecific variation of Coulter pine. Madrono. 11(8): 285-316. [21797]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Key Plant Community Associations

More info for the term: natural

Coulter pine occurs in a variety of plant associations, but seldom forms
extensive pure stands [18]. Where they do occur, communities dominated
by Coulter pine intergrade with chaparral and lower montane coniferous
forest [5,24,27,47]. Coulter pine is named as a dominant species in the
following published classifications:

Terrestrial natural communities of California [22]
Vegetation types of the San Bernadino Mountains [25]
Vegetation of the San Bernadino Mountains [37]
A vegetation classification system applied to southern California [42]
Mixed evergreen forest [45]
Vascular plant communities of California [47]
Montane and subalpine forests of the Transverse and Peninsular ranges [48]
An introduction to the plant communities of the Santa Ana and San
Jacinto Mountains [52]

Associated trees not mentioned in Distribution and Occurrence include
sugar pine (Pinus lambertiana), bristlecone fir (Abies bracteata),
incense-cedar (Libocedrus decurrens), Sargent cypress (Cupressus
sargentii), black cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa), California bay
(Umbellularia californica), bigcone Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga
macrocarpa), Pacific madrone (Arbutus menziesii), and birchleaf
mountain-mahogany (Cercocarpus betuloides var. betuloides)
[4,7,22,24,47,48,55]. Understory associates include chamise (Adenostoma
fasciculatum), Eastwood manzanita (Arctostaphylos glandulosa), Pringle
manzanita (A. pringlei), pointleaf manzanita (A. pugens), deerbrush
(Ceanothus integerrimus), annual hairgrass (Deschampsia danthonioides),
rareflower heterocodon (Heterocodon rariflorum), golden violet (Viola
douglasii), and annual ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum) [4,19,37,48,52].
  • 42. Paysen, Timothy E.; Derby, Jeanine A.; Black, Hugh, Jr.; [and others]
  • 4. Barbour, Michael G. 1988. Californian upland forests and woodlands. In: Barbour, Michael G.; Billings, William Dwight, eds. North American terrestrial vegetation. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press: 131-164. [13880]
  • 5. Bentley, Jay R. 1967. Conversion of chaparral areas to grassland: techniques used in California. Agric. Handb. 328. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 35 p. [195]
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 18. Griffin, James R. 1978. The Marble-Cone fire ten months later. Fremontia. 6: 8-14. [19081]
  • 19. Griffin, James R. 1982. Pine seedlings, native ground cover, and Lolium multiflorum on the Marble-Cone burn, Santa Lucia Range, California. Madrono. 29(3): 177-188. [4935]
  • 22. Holland, Robert F. 1986. Preliminary descriptions of the terrestrial natural communities of California. Sacramento, CA: California Department of Fish and Game. 156 p. [12756]
  • 24. Horton, J. S. 1951. Vegetation. In: Some aspects of watershed management in southern California vegetation. Misc. Paper 1. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 25. Horton, Jerome S. 1960. Vegetation types of the San Bernardino Mountains. Tech. Rep. PSW-44. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station. 29 p. [10687]
  • 27. Keeley, Jon E.; Keeley, Sterling C. 1988. Chaparral. In: Barbour, Michael G.; Billings, William Dwight, eds. North American terrestrial vegetation. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press: 165-207. [19545]
  • 37. Minnich, Richard A. 1976. Vegetation of the San Bernardino Mountains. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 99-124. [4232]
  • 45. Sawyer, John O.; Thornburgh, Dale A.; Griffin, James R. 1977. Mixed evergreen forest. In: Barbour, Michael G.; Major, Jack, eds. Terrestrial vegetation of California. New York: John Wiley and Sons: 359-381. [7218]
  • 47. Thorne, Robert F. 1976. The vascular plant communities of California. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 1-31. [3289]
  • 48. Thorne, Robert F. 1977. Montane and subalpine forests of the Transverse and Peninsular ranges. In: Barbour, Michael G.; Major, Jack, eds. Terrestrial vegetation of California. New York: John Wiley and Sons: 537-557. [7214]
  • 52. Vogl, Richard J. 1976. An introduction to the plant communities of the Santa Ana and San Jacinto Mountains. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 77-98. [4230]
  • 55. Zobel, Bruce. 1953. Geographic range and intraspecific variation of Coulter pine. Madrono. 11(8): 285-316. [21797]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Habitat: Ecosystem

More info on this topic.

This species is known to occur in the following ecosystem types (as named by the U.S. Forest Service in their Forest and Range Ecosystem [FRES] Type classification):

More info for the term: shrub

FRES20 Douglas-fir
FRES23 Fir - spruce
FRES28 Western hardwoods
FRES34 Chaparral - mountain shrub
FRES27 Redwood

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Habitat: Cover Types

More info on this topic.

This species is known to occur in association with the following cover types (as classified by the Society of American Foresters):

211 White fir
232 Redwood
234 Douglas-fir - tanoak - Pacific madrone
246 California black oak
247 Jeffrey pine
248 Knobcone pine
249 Canyon live oak
250 Blue oak - Digger pine
255 California coast live oak

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Habitat: Plant Associations

More info on this topic.

This species is known to occur in association with the following plant community types (as classified by Küchler 1964):

K006 Redwood forest
K020 Spruce - fir - Douglas-fir forest
K029 California mixed evergreen forest
K030 California oakwoods
K033 Chaparral
K034 Montane chaparral

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Habitat & Distribution

Dry rocky slopes, flats, ridges, and chaparral, transitional to oak-pine woodland; 300--2100m; Calif.; Mexico in Baja California.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Boulevard, St. Louis, MO, 63110 USA

Source: Missouri Botanical Garden

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

General Ecology

Fire Management Considerations

More info for the terms: fire intensity, fuel, fuel loading

Intense fire may be responsible for reducing the distribution of Coulter
pine [52,57]. Fire intensity in chaparral, woodland, and forest
vegetation is probably greater since inititation of fire suppression
[56], and intense fire reduces Coulter pine populations. Frequent,
moderate-severity surface fires, however, would probably benefit this
species. The differential survival of large trees in less intensely
burned areas and enhanced reproduction on exposed mineral soil in such
areas both suggest that most Coulter pine evolved under a regime of
frequent, light- to moderate-severity surface fires [54]. Managers
should keep in mind, however, that Coulter pine in Coulter pine-coast
live oak communities may be harmed by fire [7].

Prescribed burning has been used in Coulter pine/manzanita stands to
reduce fuel loading [11,51]. Severe fires or fires at too-frequent
intervals, however, convert such communities to mixed stands of
manzanita and ceanothus [52,55].

Frequent fire selects for Coulter pine over bigcone Douglas-fir in
canyon live oak (Quercus chrysolepis) communities [38].

Under long fire return intervals, Coulter pine invades oak savanna
[17,22,45].
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 11. Dougherty, Ron; Riggan, Philip J. 1982. Operational use of prescribed fire in southern California chaparral. In: Conrad, C. Eugene; Oechel, Walter C., technical coordinators. Proceedings of the symposium on dynamics and management of Mediterranean-type ecosystems; 1981 June 22-26; San Diego, CA. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-58. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 502-510. [6055]
  • 17. Griffin, James R. 1977. Oak woodland. In: Barbour, Michael G.; Malor, Jack, eds. Terrestrial vegetation of California. New York: John Wiley and Sons: 383-415. [7217]
  • 22. Holland, Robert F. 1986. Preliminary descriptions of the terrestrial natural communities of California. Sacramento, CA: California Department of Fish and Game. 156 p. [12756]
  • 38. Minnich, Richard A. 1980. Wildfire and the geographic relationships between canyon live oak, Coulter pine, and bigcone Douglas-fir forests. In: Plumb, Timothy R., technical coordinator. Proceedings of the symposium on the ecology, management and utilization of California oaks; 1979 June 26-28; Claremont, CA. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-44. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 55-61. [7015]
  • 45. Sawyer, John O.; Thornburgh, Dale A.; Griffin, James R. 1977. Mixed evergreen forest. In: Barbour, Michael G.; Major, Jack, eds. Terrestrial vegetation of California. New York: John Wiley and Sons: 359-381. [7218]
  • 51. Van Wagner, Ralph. 1968. Survival of coniferous plantations following fires in Los Angeles County. Journal of Forestry. 66(8): 622-625. [6551]
  • 52. Vogl, Richard J. 1976. An introduction to the plant communities of the Santa Ana and San Jacinto Mountains. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 77-98. [4230]
  • 54. Vale, Thomas R. 1979. Pinus coulteri and wildfire on Mount Diablo, California. Madrono. 26(3): 135-140. [21620]
  • 55. Zobel, Bruce. 1953. Geographic range and intraspecific variation of Coulter pine. Madrono. 11(8): 285-316. [21797]
  • 56. Parsons, David J. 1976. The role of fire in natural communities: an example from the southern Sierra Nevada, California. Environmental Conservation. 3(2): 91-99. [6478]
  • 57. Wright, Robert D. 1968. Lower elevational limits of montane trees. II. Environment-keyed responses of three conifer species. Botanical Gazette. 129(3): 219-226. [19180]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Plant Response to Fire

More info for the terms: density, frequency, interference, relative frequency

Coulter pine readily establishes from seed on burned sites [52].
Persisting cones on surviving trees, and sometimes on those killed by
fire, provide a source of seed [38,52]. Seedling establishment is
usually greatest during the first postfire year [7]. The severe Marble
Cone Fire in the Santa Lucia Mountains destroyed Coulter pine stands.
At postfire year 1, a large number of Coulter pine seeds germinated.
Three seasons following the fire, Coulter pine seedling density ranged
from 18 to 4,213 per acre (7-1,685/ha). The lower seedling densities
probably resulted from interference by annual ryegrass [19].

Vale [54] found that pine seedling density was much greater after the
Mt. Diablo fire than before it (newly-germinated pines could not be
identified by species). Pine seedling numbers were greatest in areas
where fire was less intense. In these areas, relative frequency of pine
seedlings was 100 percent; density was 2 seedlings per square meter. In
areas where fire was severe, relative frequency was only 56 percent, and
density was one seedling per square meter. Vale suggested that the
intense heat in the heavily burned areas may have destroyed seeds within
the cones of trees, but the less intense heat in the more lightly burned
areas may have opened cones without destroying seeds. Pine seedlings
were disproportionately located on areas where mineral soil was exposed.
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 19. Griffin, James R. 1982. Pine seedlings, native ground cover, and Lolium multiflorum on the Marble-Cone burn, Santa Lucia Range, California. Madrono. 29(3): 177-188. [4935]
  • 38. Minnich, Richard A. 1980. Wildfire and the geographic relationships between canyon live oak, Coulter pine, and bigcone Douglas-fir forests. In: Plumb, Timothy R., technical coordinator. Proceedings of the symposium on the ecology, management and utilization of California oaks; 1979 June 26-28; Claremont, CA. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-44. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 55-61. [7015]
  • 52. Vogl, Richard J. 1976. An introduction to the plant communities of the Santa Ana and San Jacinto Mountains. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 77-98. [4230]
  • 54. Vale, Thomas R. 1979. Pinus coulteri and wildfire on Mount Diablo, California. Madrono. 26(3): 135-140. [21620]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Immediate Effect of Fire

More info for the term: surface fire

Large Coulter pine are resistant to all but severe surface fires.
Younger trees are apparently killed by moderate-severity surface or
crown fires [23,54]. No data are available concerning the effect of
crown fire on large-diameter Coulter pine.

A "hot" surface fire on Mt. Diablo killed nearly all Coulter pine,
including large trees. In an area of the mountain where fire was less
severe, however, 9 of 52 Coulter pine survived. Of these trees, all of
those greater than 16 inches (40 cm) in d.b.h. survived, and only one
tree less than 16 inches in d.b.h. survived. Surviving trees had needle
scorch only on lower branches [54].
  • 23. Horton, Jerome S. 1949. Trees and shrubs for erosion control of southern California mountains. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 54. Vale, Thomas R. 1979. Pinus coulteri and wildfire on Mount Diablo, California. Madrono. 26(3): 135-140. [21620]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Post-fire Regeneration

More info for the terms: crown residual colonizer, root crown

Tree without adventitious-bud root crown
Crown residual colonizer (on-site, initial community)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Fire Ecology

Coulter pine displays ecotypical variation in degree of cone serotiny.
Serotiny is prevalent in Coutler pine/chaparral, Coulter pine-canyon
live oak, and Coulter pine/Sargent cypress communities. Cones of
Coulter pine in these communities typically do not open until heated by
fire. Consequently, the bulk of Coulter pine regeneration in these
communities occurs after fire. Coulter pine ecotypes associated with
coast live oak (Quercus agrifolia), however, typically bear cones that
open at maturity or shortly thereafter [7].

Coulter pine seedling development is best in mineral soil in open areas
[38]. Such conditions are created by fire.
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 38. Minnich, Richard A. 1980. Wildfire and the geographic relationships between canyon live oak, Coulter pine, and bigcone Douglas-fir forests. In: Plumb, Timothy R., technical coordinator. Proceedings of the symposium on the ecology, management and utilization of California oaks; 1979 June 26-28; Claremont, CA. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-44. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 55-61. [7015]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Successional Status

More info on this topic.

Facultative Seral Species

Coulter pine occurs in both initial communities and later seres. Stands
are often even-aged, establishing after fire [7,18,39]. Mature Coulter
pine is shade intolerant [2], but seedlings can grow in partial shade
[7,23].

At higher elevations of the Coast Ranges, Coulter pine sometimes
replaces blue oak (Quercus douglasii) [3].
  • 3. Barbour, Michael G. 1987. Community ecology and distribution of California hardwood forests and woodlands. In: Plumb, Timothy R.; Pillsbury, Norman H., technical coordinators. Proceedings of the symposium on multiple-use management of California's hardwood resources; 1986 November 12-14; San Luis Obispo, CA. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-100. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 18-25. [5356]
  • 2. Baker, Frederick S. 1949. A revised tolerance table. Journal of Forestry. 47: 179-181. [20404]
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 18. Griffin, James R. 1978. The Marble-Cone fire ten months later. Fremontia. 6: 8-14. [19081]
  • 23. Horton, Jerome S. 1949. Trees and shrubs for erosion control of southern California mountains. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 39. Minnich, Richard A. 1987. The distribution of forest trees in northern Baja California, Mexico. Madrono. 34(2): 98-127. [6985]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Growth Form (according to Raunkiær Life-form classification)

More info on this topic.

More info for the term: phanerophyte

Phanerophyte

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life Form

More info for the term: tree

Tree

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Regeneration Processes

Coulter pine first bears cones at 10 to 15 years of age [7,31,38]. The
interval between good seed crops is 3 to 6 years [31]. Cones may
persist up to 5 or 6 years [31,41]. Seed dispersal is limited due to
the large size of seed. Seed viability is generally high. Seedling
establishment is best on mineral soil in full sun. Early growth is
rapid [7,23,31,38]. (See the Fire Ecology frame for a discussion of the
role of fire in Coulter pine regeneration.)
  • 41. Munz, Philip A. 1973. A California flora and supplement. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 1905 p. [6155]
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 23. Horton, Jerome S. 1949. Trees and shrubs for erosion control of southern California mountains. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 31. Krugman, Stanley L.; Jenkinson, James L. 1974. Pinaceae--pine family. In: Schopmeyer, C. S., technical coordinator. Seeds of woody plants in the United States. Agric. Handb. 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: 598-637. [1380]
  • 38. Minnich, Richard A. 1980. Wildfire and the geographic relationships between canyon live oak, Coulter pine, and bigcone Douglas-fir forests. In: Plumb, Timothy R., technical coordinator. Proceedings of the symposium on the ecology, management and utilization of California oaks; 1979 June 26-28; Claremont, CA. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-44. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 55-61. [7015]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Phenology

More info on this topic.

More info for the term: ecotype

Coulter pine cones open for pollination in May and June [31,41,50].
Cones ripen in August and September of the second year following
pollination [29,31,50]. Mature cones may open at or soon after
maturity, slowly over a several-year peroid, or only after fire,
depending upon ecotype. Cones of nonserotinous ecotypes open and
disperse seed from October through Novermber [7,31,37].
  • 41. Munz, Philip A. 1973. A California flora and supplement. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 1905 p. [6155]
  • 50. Van Dersal, William R. 1938. Native woody plants of the United States, their erosion-control and wildlife values. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture. 362 p. [4240]
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 29. Krochmal, Arnold; Krochmal, Connie. 1982. Uncultivated nuts of the United States. Agriculture Information Bulletin 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 89 p. [1377]
  • 31. Krugman, Stanley L.; Jenkinson, James L. 1974. Pinaceae--pine family. In: Schopmeyer, C. S., technical coordinator. Seeds of woody plants in the United States. Agric. Handb. 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: 598-637. [1380]
  • 37. Minnich, Richard A. 1976. Vegetation of the San Bernardino Mountains. In: Latting, June, ed. Symposium proceedings: plant communities of southern California; 1974 May 4; Fullerton, CA. Special Publication No. 2. Berkeley, CA: California Native Plant Society: 99-124. [4232]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Pinus coulteri

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Pinus coulteri

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 6
Specimens with Barcodes: 15
Species With Barcodes: 1
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
NT
Near Threatened

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2013

Assessor/s
Farjon, A.

Reviewer/s
Stritch, L. & Thomas, P.

Contributor/s

Justification
Pinus coulteri has a limited area of occupancy. It may also be adversely affected by fire management policies. Although there are no data to quantify a rate of decline in the past or present, it is inferred that continuous and/or increased suppression of forest fires will in the long term lead to such a decline. It is therefore appropriate to flag this species as Near Threatened (it almost qualifies for a threatened category under criterion B2ab(ii,iii,v)), while closer monitoring is required.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N4 - Apparently Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G4 - Apparently Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Population

Population
Subpopulations are severely fragmented and there is a general decline in the population trend.

Population Trend
Decreasing
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Major Threats
This fire-adapted and fire-dependent (to some extent) species could be at risk from forest succession leading to dominance of less fire-adapted trees in those (usually urbanized) areas where fires are being prevented or put down. Conversely, too frequent fires could destroy seedlings and saplings before they reach a reproductive age. Thus fire control, if not conducted with the ecology of this species in mind, could work against the long-term survival chances of Pinus coulteri. It is unknown whether this situation has already led to decline of the population
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
This species occurs in several protected areas. However, a more adequate management of forest fires affecting this species than conducted at present in most areas is required. Research into the effects of fire suppression on regeneration of Coulter Pine and competition from other species is required.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Management considerations

More info for the terms: fire suppression, tree

Coulter pine distribution has apparently decreased in recent years.
This may be due to past policies of fire suppression [55]. See the Fire
Effects frame for a discussion on this problem.

Annual grasses deplete moisture from the top layer of soil, which
decreases survival of young Coulter pine [12,23]. Mature Coulter pine,
however, are drought tolerant [23].

Coulter pine cone processing and tree planting methods are discussed in
the literature [23,31]. A discussion of damaging agents can also be
found in the literature [1,7,21,28].
  • 12. Dunn, Paul H.; Barro, Susan C.; Wells, Wade G., II; [and others]
  • 1. Amman, Gene D.; Cole, Walter E. 1983. Mountain pine beetle dynamics in lodgepole pine forests. Part II. Population dynamics. Gen. Tech. Rep. INT-145. Ogden, UT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. 59 p. [8315]
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 21. Hempel, Kirsten. 1988. Dwarf mistletoe laying seige to pines. Forestry Research West. [Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service]
  • 23. Horton, Jerome S. 1949. Trees and shrubs for erosion control of southern California mountains. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 28. Kimmey, J. W. 1957. Dwarfmistletoes of California and their control. Tech. Pap. No. 19. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California Forest and Range Experiment Station. 12 p. [16464]
  • 31. Krugman, Stanley L.; Jenkinson, James L. 1974. Pinaceae--pine family. In: Schopmeyer, C. S., technical coordinator. Seeds of woody plants in the United States. Agric. Handb. 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: 598-637. [1380]
  • 55. Zobel, Bruce. 1953. Geographic range and intraspecific variation of Coulter pine. Madrono. 11(8): 285-316. [21797]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Importance to Livestock and Wildlife

Females of the southern race of white-headed woodpeckers forage for
insects almost exclusively on lower main trunks of Coulter pine, while
male white-headed woodpeckers extensively use the cones [33]. The seeds
are also a dependable year-round food source for western gray squirrels
[7]. Black-tailed deer rarely browse even young trees [23].
  • 7. Borchert, Mark. 1985. Serotiny and cone-habit variation in populations of Pinus coulteri (Pinaceae) in the southern Coast Ranges of California. Madrono. 32(1): 29-48. [5997]
  • 23. Horton, Jerome S. 1949. Trees and shrubs for erosion control of southern California mountains. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 33. Ligon, J. David. 1973. Foraging behavior of the white-headed woodpecker in Idaho. Auk. 90(4): 862-869. [8076]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Wood Products Value

Coulter pine wood is rarely used except as fuelwood and second-grade
lumber [26,41,50]. It is light, weak, coarse-grained, and brittle [41].
  • 41. Munz, Philip A. 1973. A California flora and supplement. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 1905 p. [6155]
  • 50. Van Dersal, William R. 1938. Native woody plants of the United States, their erosion-control and wildlife values. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture. 362 p. [4240]
  • 26. Huber, Dean W. 1992. Utilization of hardwoods, fuelwood, and special forest products in California, Arizona, and New Mexico. In: Ffolliott, Peter F.; Gottfried, Gerald J.; Bennett, Duane A.; [and others]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Other uses and values

Coulter pine is used as an ornamental [23]. The cones are used for
decoration and crafts [26].

Coulter pine seeds were eaten by Native Americans [13,15,29,41].
  • 41. Munz, Philip A. 1973. A California flora and supplement. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 1905 p. [6155]
  • 13. Elias, Thomas S.; Dykeman, Peter A. 1982. Field guide to North American edible wild plants. New York: Outdoor Life Books. 286 p. [21104]
  • 15. Fisher, James T.; Mexal, John G.; Phillips, Gregory C. 1988. High value crops from New Mexico pinyon pines. I. Crop improvement through woodland stand management. In: Fisher, James T.; Mexal, John G.; Pieper, Rex D., technical coordinators. Pinyon-juniper woodlands of New Mexico: a biological and economic appraisal. Special Report 73. Las Cruces, NM: New Mexico State University, College of Agriculture and Home Economics: 13-23. [5259]
  • 23. Horton, Jerome S. 1949. Trees and shrubs for erosion control of southern California mountains. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, California [Pacific Southwest]
  • 26. Huber, Dean W. 1992. Utilization of hardwoods, fuelwood, and special forest products in California, Arizona, and New Mexico. In: Ffolliott, Peter F.; Gottfried, Gerald J.; Bennett, Duane A.; [and others]
  • 29. Krochmal, Arnold; Krochmal, Connie. 1982. Uncultivated nuts of the United States. Agriculture Information Bulletin 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 89 p. [1377]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Wikipedia

Coulter pine

The Coulter pine or big-cone pine, Pinus coulteri, is a native of the coastal mountains of Southern California and northern Baja California (Mexico). Isolated groves are found as far north as the San Francisco Bay Area in Mt. Diablo State Park and Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve. The species is named after Thomas Coulter, an Irish botanist and physician.

Description[edit]

Pinus coulteri is a substantial coniferous evergreen tree in the genus Pinus. The size ranges from 10–24 m (30–80 ft) tall,[2] and a trunk diameter up to 1 m (3 ft). The trunk is vertical and branches horizontal to upcurved. The leaves are needle-like, in bundles of three, glaucous gray-green, 15–30 cm (6–12 in) long and stout, 2 mm (0.01 in) thick.

The outstanding characteristic of this tree is the large, spiny cones which are 20–40 cm (8–16 in) long, and weigh 2–5 kg (4-10 lbs) when fresh. Coulter pines produce the largest cones of any pine tree species (people are actually advised to wear hardhats when working in Coulter pine groves), although the slender cones of the sugar pine are longer. The large size of the cones has earned them the nickname "widowmakers" among locals.

Ecology[edit]

This erect, medium-sized pine prefers south-facing slopes between 200–2300 m (600-7,500 ft) elevation, and tolerates dry rocky soil. Pinus coulteri most often appears in mixed forests. The Coulter pine occurs in a number of forest plant associations; for example, At higher elevations forestation of the San Jacinto Mountains Coulter Pine is co-dominant with the California black oak.[3] Woodpeckers often forage on the species, and peel the bark to access insects underneath.[4]

Uses[edit]

The wood is weak and soft, so that the species is little used other than for firewood.

Pinus coulteri is cultivated as an ornamental tree, planted in parks and large gardens, and drought tolerant landscaping. The Coulter pine has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.[5]

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Farjon, A. (2011). "Pinus coulteri". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 3.1. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 2013-11-10. 
  2. ^ Gymnosperm Database, 2008
  3. ^ C. Michael Hogan, 2008
  4. ^ Moore, Gerry; Kershner, Bruce; Craig Tufts; Daniel Mathews; Gil Nelson; Spellenberg, Richard; Thieret, John W.; Terry Purinton; Block, Andrew (2008). National Wildlife Federation Field Guide to Trees of North America. New York: Sterling. p. 86. ISBN 1-4027-3875-7. 
  5. ^ "RHS Plant Selector Pinus coulteri AGM / RHS Gardening". Apps.rhs.org.uk. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 

Notes[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Source: Wikipedia

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Notes

Comments

Pinus coulteri is the heaviest-coned pine; one who seeks its shade should wear a hardhat.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Missouri Botanical Garden, 4344 Shaw Boulevard, St. Louis, MO, 63110 USA

Source: Missouri Botanical Garden

Trusted

Article rating from 1 person

Average rating: 2.0 of 5

Names and Taxonomy

Taxonomy

Common Names

Coulter pine
California Coulter pine
big-cone pine
nut pine
pitch pine

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

The currently accepted scientific name of Coulter pine is Pinus coulteri
D. Don [10,35]. There are no recognized subspecies or varieties.

Coulter pine hybridizes with Jeffrey pine (Pinus jeffreyi) [8,10,31,35].
  • 35. Little, Elbert L., Jr. 1979. Checklist of United States trees (native and naturalized). Agric. Handb. 541. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 375 p. [2952]
  • 10. Critchfield, William B.; Little, Elbert L., Jr. 1966. Geographic distribution of the pines of the world. Misc. Publ. 991. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 97 p. [20314]
  • 31. Krugman, Stanley L.; Jenkinson, James L. 1974. Pinaceae--pine family. In: Schopmeyer, C. S., technical coordinator. Seeds of woody plants in the United States. Agric. Handb. 450. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: 598-637. [1380]
  • 8. Conkle, M. Thompson; Critchfield, William B. 1988. Genetic variation and hybridization of ponderosa pine. In: Baumgartner, David M.; Lotan, James E., compilers. Ponderosa pine: The species and its management: Symposium proceedings; 1987 September 29 - October 1; Spokane, WA. Pullman, WA: Washington State University, Cooperative Extension: 27-43. [9399]

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!