Pioneer Pine

Sand pines (PInus clausa) were the Christmas trees of pioneer families.  Think Charlie Brown Christmas trees.

These fast-growing, short-needled pines inhabit high, dry places.  You will find them growing on the higher ground in the southern portion of the Oslo Riverfront Conservation Area (ORCA).

Their cones are tiny and remain closed (hence the species name clausa, which means closed) until fire or another disturbance liberties the seeds.  The sister storms of 2004, powerful Hurricanes Frances and Jeanne, which toppled many mature sand pines, released  seeds from sand pines, so you’ll see young sand pines at ORCA.

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