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. A very wind resistant tree, it can be grown as part of a shelterbelt planting. Trees have proved to be very resistant to maritime exposure on our Cornwall trial grounds[K]. Resin and turpentine are obtained from the wood, they are used in ointments and plasters. 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.Wood - non durable. Used for rough carpentry and furniture.
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A very hardy tree, it is extensively planted for timber and shelter. Slow growing for its first few years, it then speeds up considerably and annual height increases up to 1 metre are often found. New growth takes place from early May to mid-July. Requires at least reasonable summer warmth in order to ripen its wood, otherwise it can suffer from die-back caused by Brunchorstia destruens. However, healthy trees are found as far north in Britain as Sutherland in Scotland. 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 are short-lived in cultivation.Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus.
Problems, pests & diseases
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