Tree of September 2021: Loblolly Pine

Life in Tree Death
2021 Cankerworm Update

For September’s Tree of the Month, we have chosen the Loblolly Pine! When I first moved to North Carolina, I was mesmerized by this pine I had never seen before. Loblollies are primarily found in the American southeast and can be differentiated from other species of pine by their long, dark green needles that are 6-9 inches.  This fast-growing evergreen can adapt to a wide range of soil and weather conditions.  They also provide habitat for many animals such as wild turkeys, white tailed deer, rabbits, grey squirrels and doves!

Size at maturity

  • Height: 60-100 feet
  • Crown: 25-35 feet


  • Oval when young and becomes more irregular as it ages
  • Lower branches fall off as tree matures


  • Flowers are small and inconspicuous (2-4cm wide). They are yellow to reddish-purple in color and bloom from March to April.


  • Their seeds are found tucked within pine cones. Seeds can be removed from pine cones in fall, kept moist and cool over winter, and planted in the spring. 


  • Full sun is preferred.


  • Loblolly Pines need acidic, lomey, moist, well-drained soils to make suitable conditions for growth. 

Natural Range

  • Loblollies range from southern New Jersey to central Florida, and can be found as far west as Texas.

Environmental/wildlife benefits

  • Because of their large mature size, loblolly pines have the ability to act as massive carbon sinks, mitigating climate change and pollution.  They provide shelter for wildlife and their seeds are eaten by animals.

Fun fact

  • Loblolly pines are one of the “moon trees” that were taken aboard Apollo 14. After their flight to the moon, they were planted around the United States. 
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