Meet the Pines: Jack Pine

When I ventured to eastern Maine last month to see a rare sparrow, a roadside pine in the town of Winter Harbor caught my attention. I'd long heard about Jack Pine (Pinus banksiana), but until that moment had never introduced myself. Native to northern New England, Jack Pine has two short needle-leaves per bundle and distinctly asymmetrical seed cones -- no other New England pine shares this combination of characteristics. The following photos show various parts of the tree, including the paired needles (with a comparison shot of the needles of Scotch Pine), resinous winter buds, old male pollen cones, seed cones of various ages, and bark. (To view the following images in full-size, click here.)

Not sure how to identify the other pines of New England? Check out my previous posts covering Eastern White, Pitch, Red, and Scotch Pine.

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