Pinus palustris

long-leaf pine, longleaf pine, georgia pine, longleaf yellow pine


Leaf Arrangement


Leaf Type


Leaf Shape


Growth Form


Flower Color


Flower Month

February - April

Height (meters)

28.0 - 30.0

Milky Sap








Growing Season

Warm season

Leaf Retention


Wetland Class


Prairie Coefficient of Conservatism


Field Characters

Identification tip: longleaf pine may be distinguished by its candles (the cluster of needles at the end of a growing tip) which are globe shaped as opposed to the candles of slash pine whose candles are more funnel shaped.

Animal Use

The seeds are a favorite source of food for wild turkey and fox squirrels. Hogs root up seedlings and eat bark and soft wood of the taproot.

Natural History

Mostly in deep sands or coarse sandy loams. Longleaf pine is the dominate tree of the forests bordering Louisiana's coastal prairie to the north. It is found in the Coastal Plain from southeastern Virginia to central Florida, west to southeastern Texas. In southeastern United States this is an important timber tree and a leading world producer of naval stores. Pin is French for pine. A pine forest is called pinie`re. (Holmes 1990).


Deep sands or coarse sandy loam, moist or dry sandy soil.

Plant Uses

The woods of southern pines share many common properties. They are classed as moderately heavy, moderately hard, moderately strong, stiff, and moderately shock resistant. Heartwood is moderately resistant to decay. All southern pines have moderately large shrinkage when drying but stay in place well after they are seasoned. In nail-withdrawal resistance, they rank above hemlock, spruce, and Douglas-fir. Used mainly for building materials such as framing, sash, sheathing, subflooring, joists, and interior finish. As a result of techniques developed in recent years, much southern pine is cut into veneers for use in construction plywood. It is also used for boxes, crates, caskets, interior parts of furniture, woodenware, and novelties. Considerable amounts go into poles, pilings, cross ties, and mine timbers. Much southern pine is cut for pulpwood. Southern pines are used for obtaining wood turpentine, tar, and tar oils through the distillation process. Long-leaf pine, along with slash pine, is used for commercial production of naval stores.