Pinus cembra (Arolla Pine, Cembran Pine, Swiss Stone Pine) is a species of pine tree native to the mountainous regions of Europe, including the Alps and Carpathian Mountains. It is a slow-growing, long-lived tree that is highly valued for its timber, ornamental qualities, and edible seeds.
Size and Growth Habit: Swiss Stone Pine is a medium-sized evergreen tree that typically reaches heights of 15-25 meters (50-80 feet), although it can occasionally grow taller. It has a straight trunk and a narrow, conical crown in its youth, which becomes more rounded with age. The branches are usually ascending and arranged in whorls.
Needles: The needles of Pinus cembra are arranged in bundles of five and are approximately 5-8 cm (2-3 inches) in length. They are dark green and slightly twisted. The needles persist on the tree for several years before shedding.
Cones: The cones of Swiss Stone Pine are ovoid or egg-shaped and grow to a size of about 5-10 cm (2-4 inches) in length. They have thick scales with a woody texture and are typically brown in color. The cones contain small, winged seeds that are dispersed by wind.
Habitat: Swiss Stone Pine is adapted to high-altitude environments and can be found in alpine and subalpine regions. It prefers well-drained soils and is often found on rocky slopes and ridges. The tree is well-suited to cold climates and can tolerate extreme temperatures, including frost and snow.
Uses: Swiss Stone Pine has several uses and is highly valued. The timber of the tree is used in construction, carpentry, and the production of furniture. The wood is durable, light in color, and has a pleasant aroma. The seeds of Swiss Stone Pine, known as pine nuts, are edible and used in culinary applications, such as in baking, cooking, and as a topping.
Botanical Name : Pinus cembra
Common Name : Swiss Stone Pine
Height : 30-40 ft
Spread : 15-20 ft
Germination Info : Seed requires 60 days warm moist stratification followed by 120 days cold moist stratification
Hardiness zone : 2-7
Other info : Some growers will mechanically scarify the seed coat prior to warm stratification. Seed has hard seed coat.
Average seed per ounce : Approx. 100