Lodgepole Pine

Also known as:
Contorta Pine
Rocky mountains, N.W. America.

General description

Resinous large evergreen shrub, or small-med tree (occ large 6-24 m). Bark reddish brown, grey on surface, fissured and forming small plates. Branches straight to twisted, usually on trunk almost to ground. Needle leaves, two per bundle, yellow- dark green. Male cones cylindrical 5-15 mm long. Female cones woody, 30-60 mm long, pointed downwards on branch.

Disturbed and open forest, shrubland, tussockland, herbfield, fernland, bare land, mineralised places, screes, volcanic habitats.

Wind, occasionally by water. Planted woodlots, remnant plantations, hedges.

Prolific seeder, early maturing, tall, long-lived, forms dense stands. Tolerant of a range of conditions. Forms dense often pure stands, especially on poor soils. Becomes permanent canopy spp. Plantations remove ground water in summer, fail to retain it in winter, causing drought and flooding. Leaf litter inhibits growth of understory spp, affects water quality, can destroy freshwater habitats.

Site management

Recommended approaches

1. Pull or dig out small plants.
2. Fell at ground level, remove all branches with green needles from the stump. Check for branches below ground. Stems occasionally resprout especially if green needles are left.
3. Cut and paint cut stems with Vigilant gel. Can be used where it is difficult to remove all green needles.
4. Bore & fill: metsulfuron/kg at 20 g/l in water. 1 hole /100 mm trunk diameter, 2ml of solution per hole. All year round.

Caution: when using any herbicide or pesticide PLEASE READ THE LABEL THOROUGHLY to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

Similar species

Pinus spp.

Radiata pine has leaves in bundles of three which are much longer and darker green. The foliage also occurs mostly towards the ends of the branches.

Search tags

RPMS status

Surveillance - Whole Region
National Pest Plant Accord species - nationwide
lodgepole pine - Main species image