Pine trees are no different from any other type of plant or tree, in that, they also need basic elements like sunlight, water, and air to survive. Without these elements, pine trees will not grow to be as healthy as they should.
They are called conifers which are considered to be one of the most ecologically important groups of plants. There are different varieties of pine trees and each has its own set of length, shape, texture of needles and cones. For example, dwarf mugo is only 4-foot tall while white pine can reach up to 100 feet high.
Growing, and caring for pine trees, is easy if you know the fundamentals. Luckily, this article will provide you with that crucial information to help you grow the pine trees you love.
How To Grow Your Pine Trees?
1. Find a good location.
Location is the key to growing a pine tree. Finding the perfect location will ensure their full growth and will need almost no care once they have established. The ideal criteria for pine trees are plenty of sunlight and moist, rich, well-drained soil.
2. Dig a hole.
The hole should be twice the size of the container. The hole must be deep enough to keep the pine tree in position. Do not go too deep, or the trees will rot.
3. Fix the roots before planting them.
Usually, the roots of pine trees tend to circle because of the limited space in the spot. If necessary, cut through them to fix the roots from circling. Their roots mustn’t get entangled by the time they grow in full size.
4. Place the tree in the hole.
Use the removed soil from the hole to backfill the trees and keep standing straight. Press the soil slightly to remove air pockets and once the hole is half full, fill it with water and let it settle. Repeat it when the hole is full, and do not mound the soil around the trunk.
5. Water regularly
Newly planted trees need water every few days to keep the soil moist but not soggy. After a month, the watering cycle is changed weekly. Once they have established, they won’t be needing a regular water cycle except in prolonged dry seasons.
6. Fertilizing cycle
Pine trees do not need fertilizers during their first year in the ground. The following year, use two to four pounds of 10-10-10 fertilizer for every square foot of soil. For the next few years, use only two pounds of fertilizers for each inch of trunk diameter per year.
Do Pine Trees Need A Lot Of Sun?
Yes! Most pine trees are shade intolerant which means they prefer direct sunlight.
However, some species of pine trees can grow in the partial sun, like white pine trees. Therefore, you have to mimic the environment they get in the wild if you plan to grow them in your yard. The location should meet all the nutrients they need, and they should be exposed to direct sunlight.
What Do They Need To Survive?
1. Dry soil
Pine trees need to have well-drained and moist soil to grow. They can grow in acidic or alkaline conditions but not in waterlogged areas. This is pretty common among the pine family.
Since pine trees are sun-loving plants, sunlight is a must for them. Remember this always; sunlight is king for the pine trees.
Interestingly, pine trees produce male and female cones, but they need cross-pollination for fertilization to occur. Hence, the wind is also necessary for them to distribute the spring pollen.
Pine trees are dependent on forest fires as well for ecological survival. Some pine trees need fire, like Southern longleaf pine, pitch pine, and Ponderosa pine to develop thick bark at their early stage in life because of the forest fire. But it could be a problem for other competing trees in the wild.
Birds do play an essential role in helping some pine trees survive. The birds accomplish this by opening the seed covering and ready for germination after passing their digestive tract.
Mulch helps by removing water stress experienced by pine trees. Prolonged dry spells are not suitable for your pine trees, and putting mulch helps the soil retain moisture while preventing weeds from sprouting simultaneously.
In general, pine trees do not need pruning, but you can choose to control their size but only with light trims. Pruning is essential when there is a dead or diseased branch as it can contaminate other parts of the plants. Tall pine trees require an expert to prune because they are high to handle by an ordinary person, and pruning them is crucial, as dead branches of tall pine trees can cause serious injury to a person or property.
How To Make Pine Trees Grow Faster
1. Test Soil For Nutrients
There are fundamental nutrients that need to be present in a location where you plan to grow your pine tree. These nutrients are nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. This method will help you know the lacking nutrients in the soil and determine what fertilizer to use. For starters, contact your local garden provider to help you test the soil.
2. Examine Pine Tree Needles
Pine tree needles will give you enough information about the condition of your pine trees. Yellow needles suggest that the tree is suffering from iron chlorosis due to a lack of chlorophyll. If you encounter this problem, apply iron chelates on the surface based on the manufacturer’s instructions.
3. Examine the Soil
Examining the soil can help you determine the earth’s condition, whether it has a well-drained system or whether the ground has signs of excessive dryness. To explore the soil, you can dig a hole and fill it with water; if the water is drained after 12 hours, then the soil has a well-drained system. Nevertheless, the remedy of dry soil is watering them regularly.
Types of Pine Trees
There are about 111 varieties of pine trees globally and are native to most of the Northern Hemisphere. Some examples of the common North American Pines are listed below.
1. Eastern White Pine
2. Western White Pine
3. Sugar Pine
4. Red Pine
5. Pitch Pine
6. Jack Pine
7. Longleaf Pine
8. Loblolly Pine
9. Slash Pine
10. Virginia Pine
11. Ponderosa Pine
There you have it! Although there are many kinds of pine trees globally, they are not vastly different in growing requirements. Remember, pine trees are similar to any other plants that need proper nutrients and care.
Perhaps, you already know by now when to plant your pine tree. Pick the pine tree you love the most and nurture it in your yard. Do not forget that the sun is king for the pine trees!
Lastly, let’s not forget that we humans should make a point of spending at least ten minutes every day in the sun. With essential Vitamin D, the human body receives a very important vitamin that helps us with our bone development and maintenance. That’s The sun provides humans with essential Vitamin D. It’s just one of the benefits of Vitamin D. So, whilst wearing our all-important sunscreen, we can spend time in the sun enjoying looking at the glorious sun-seeking pines.