The pitch obtained from the trunk is allowed to harden and is then used as a chewing gum.A vanillin flavouring is obtained as a by-product of other resins that are released from the pulpwood.
The needles contain a substance called terpene, this is released when rain washes over the needles and it has a negative effect on the germination of some plants, including wheat. Oleo-resins are present in the tissues of all species of pines, but these are often not present in sufficient quantity to make their extraction economically worthwhile. The resins are obtained by tapping the trunk, or by destructive distillation of the wood. In general, trees from warmer areas of distribution give the higher yields. Turpentine consists of an average of 20% of the oleo-resin and is separated by distillation. Turpentine has a wide range of uses including as a solvent for waxes etc, for making varnish, medicinal etc. Rosin is the substance left after turpentine is removed. This is used by violinists on their bows and also in making sealing wax, varnish etc. Pitch can also be obtained from the resin and is used for waterproofing, as a wood preservative etc. The gum (this almost certainly means the resin[K]) is used in waterproofing canoes, baskets, water containers etc, for repairing pottery vessels and in making turquoise mosaic. It is also used as an adhesive for mending pottery. The bark has been used as a roofing material in houses.Wood - light, soft, weak and brittle. Used primarily for fuel and fence posts. It is also made into charcoal and used for smelting. The wood has a high combustibility and burns well. It gives off a pleasant aroma as it burns.
The turpentine obtained from the resin of all pine trees is antiseptic, diuretic, rubefacient and vermifuge. It is a valuable remedy in the treatment of kidney and bladder complaints, and is used both internally and externally to treat rheumatic affections. It is also used in treating diseases of the mucous membranes, respiratory complaints, VD, TB, coughs, colds and influenza. A decoction is used to rid the body of tapeworms and other internal parasites. Externally it is used in the form of liniment plasters and inhalers. A poultice of the melted gum has been applied to cuts and sores. The heated pitch has been applied to the face as a depilatory. The pitch has also been used as a face cream to prevent sunburn. The heated pitch has been used as a poultice to treat sciatic pains and muscular soreness. The cooked pitch has been used by women to stop menstruation and thereby become infertile. It has also been given to adolescent girls to help them keep youthful and live a long life.The gum is used as a plaster on sores and cuts.
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A slow growing tree in the wild, taking 25 years from sowing until it produces a crop. It then usually produces cones annually, with heavy crops very 2 - 3 years. The tree is long-lived, taking 250 - 350 years to reach maturity. It grows well in southern England and in most of the drier parts of Britain. The cones take 2 summers to mature, they open and shed their seed whilst still attached to the tree. Closely related to P. cembroides and considered to be no more than a sub-species of it by some botanists. The main difference is that this species has its leaves singly whilst P. cembroides has them in groups of two or three. Plants are strongly outbreeding, self-fertilized seed usually grows poorly. They hybridize freely with other members of this genus. Leaf secretions inhibit the germination of seeds, thereby reducing the amount of plants that can grow beneath the tree.Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus.
Problems, pests & diseases
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