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Pinus torreyana

Pinus torreyana
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Scientific name: Pinus torreyana C.Parry ex Carrière  1855

Synonyms: Pinus lophosperma Lindl.

Common names: Torrey pine, Del Mare pine, Soledad pine



Tree to 25(-40) m tall, with trunk to 1(-2) m in diameter, often forked and deformed by wind and storms. Bark reddish brown to grayish brown, irregularly broken up into small, flat-topped, vertical blocks by shallow furrows. Crown conical at first, broadening, flattening, and opening with age, often becoming broader than high, with numerous, upwardly arched, thick branches sparsely clothed with foliage at the tips. Twigs grayish purple-brown with a thin waxy coating, rough with bases of scale leaves, hairless. Buds 15-25(-50) mm long, resinous. Needles in bundles of (three to) five, each needle (15-)18-30 cm long, stiffly outstretched and straight or slightly twisted, lasting 2-4 years, grayish yellow green or bluish green. Individual needles covered with lines of stomates on all three faces, and with a two-stranded midvein and three to six resin canals at the corners and in between deep inside the leaf tissue. Sheath 2-3(-5) cm long, the lower 1-2 cm persisting and falling with the bundles. Pollen cones (2-)4-6 cm long, yellow. Seed cones 9-16 cm long, massively egg-shaped, with 60-80 seed scales, green before maturity, ripening dark reddish brown to chestnut brown, opening widely to release the seeds and persisting several years, with a few seeds remaining caught among the lower scales, on stout stalks 2-4 cm long. Seed scales angularly paddle-shaped, the exposed face projecting in a pyramid tipped by a stout, sharp, triangular umbo. Seed body 15-25 mm long, the easily detachable wing 10-15 mm longer.

Santa Rosa Island and near Del Mar, coastal San Diego County, southern California. Forming pure, open stands among grass or shrubs; 50-150 m.


Conservation Status

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered

(Urbanization is encroaching on the mainland population (ssp. torreyana) with the effect that trees outside the Torrey Pines State Park are still disappearing. There is also an acute risk of a major fire wiping out a large part of the population, a risk that is known to increase for various reasons where housing developments are near the population in a potentially fire-prone area. The present decline is probably slow, but ongoing in one of the two subspecies (mainland population). The actual area of occupancy is very small for the two subspecies combined, less than 1 km² and definitely less than 10 km². The population is severely fragmented  (two subpopulations on an island and two on the mainland) and there is continuing decline. So although the island subspecies is listed as Vulnerable, the species as a whole qualifies for listing as Critically Endangered)



Farjon, A. (2010). A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.

Eckenwalder, J.E. (2009) Conifers of the World: The Complete Reference. Timber Press, Portland.

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Cambridge, UK /Gland, Switzerland


Copyright © Aljos Farjon, James E. Eckenwalder, IUCN, Conifers Garden. All rights reserved.

Product CodePINQ02R256
Weight3 kg
Height40 - 50 cm

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