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These little trees are full, fun and famous as the source of delicious pignoli nuts (Italian pine nuts). Enjoy indoors through winter and then move outside when the weather warms.
Choose a site with good sunlight. Italian Stone pines are happiest in full sun. These trees are evergreen, develop a canopy that's umbrell shaped and are excellent for providing cooling shade. Italian Stone pines manage salty air nicely, do well in coastal regions and are good choices for beach gardens.
If you live in a part of the country where the ground freezes, consider repotting your pine tree to a 10-12" container and summering it outdoors. Then bring it back inside for the winter.
If you live in zones 8-10 and are planting in the ground, look for a site where the soil drains well. Italian Stone pines originate in the Mediterranean where soils are well drained and often gritty. These trees won't thrive in soggy soil.
Italian Stone pine trees are long lived and grow to a mature height of 45-75 feet. Keep this in mind if you are planting outside for eventual landscaping benefits.
Plant outdoors in spring when frost danger has past, the soil has warmed and night temperatures have reached the 60s.
Dig a hole a bit larger than the pot your tree is in and loosen the surrounding soil. Gently tip your tree out of it's nursery pot and set upright in the hole so that the soil level from the pot is even with the ground soil. Fill with the soil you removed, pat to remove large air pockets and water to settle the soil. Check to make sure your plants hasn't sunk a bit; if it has, correct that.
Italian Stone pines needs about 1" of water per week while they are young and are fairly drought tolerant when mature.
In zones 8-10, simply leave your Italian Stone Pine tree in the garden. In colder regions, bring your tree indoors for the winter.
Light: Full sun to mostly sun sites
Depth: Same as surrounding soil
Water: Average moisture
Uses: Containers and landscape trees in frost-free regions.
Tip: Plant where shade can be enjoyed for years
They Start Out Looking Like This:
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