We specialize in ‘native’ species although you will find lots of other plants, tree … The Monterey pine tree is known for its tall stature, bright green needles, and egg-shaped cones. If you are in the Wildfire Interface, composted mulch or cedar bark products are better, safer choices. Traditionally, these pine tops are boiled in water to make a tea used to treat fevers and coughs, as well as increase urination. New NAU study finds evolutionary processes work at multiple levels to shape whole communities, How Arizona universities are riding the waves of COVID-19, Copper rush: Opponents worry feds have fast-tracked Resolution mine OK. By 15mhhm15 [1,273 Posts, 2,700 Comments] This is a craft my son thought of on his own and had our family do individually, it was a lot of fun! All Rights Reserved. Needles are lightweight. My first advice for identifying pines is to look at the scientific names of the tree and not their common names. Traditional Chinese medicine used infused pine in wine to apply topically for joint pain. Use collected pine needles around fire-resistant plants like roses, lilacs, rhododendrons, azaleas, and maple trees. Gutter guards protect rain gutters, but piles of needles are on the ground. Pine trees are evergreen, so you don’t expect to see dead, brown needles. Be sure to use only clean and dry pine needles to avoid spoilage. While spring is the optimal time for harvesting, you can do it year-round. Pine has been used since the Middle Ages for its medicinal benefits and was a favourite healing plant for Native Americans. Start by noting the season and which part of the tree is affected. Pine is easy to find year-round, making it extremely accessible for most people. Give the rest away to friends and fellow gardeners in the neighborhood. As mentioned earlier, pine needles are high in Vitamin C and are especially helpful in preventing scurvy. Despite our local concentration of pine forests, rarely is pine straw offered for sale. Pine Needle Christmas Tree. I had no idea when I was out collecting a big bunch of needles for making some tree ornaments! Get all the latest news for the quad city area – Email Newsletters you can trust. Most pine species will have long needles but there are a few with shorter ones. Better Living Through Plants. Once pine needles settle, very few float away in heavy rain. Fruit: Woody cones, 5-12" long (smaller than sugar pine cones); slender and curved.Cone scales are thin and often curve up on the end.. Bark: Dark; broken into small squares or rectangles on older trees (smooth on young trees). Native Americans have been using pine for centuries to help with the respiratory system and for healing wounds. Since pine trees are around every corner in North America, you could forage for them in the forest. You will likely want to use a basic, white vinegar as your base for cleaning purposes. Many things, such as climate, rainfall, irrigation water, and the soil itself, influence soil pH. Younger, fresh needles called pine tops contain the most Vitamin C and are an effective survival plant. Essential oils are collected specifically from pine needles for remedy use, but the needles can also be used for crafts and food. Are Pine Needles a Good Choice for Mulching? To reduce wildfire risk, rake up the light, fluffy layer of needles, but leave a 2-4″ layer around the trees’ drip lines. Common pine varieties along the west coast include: There are many health benefits of pine needles, making it a great basic selection for your herbal cabinet. Not only are they easy on a gardener’s backs, but they also don’t compact soils. I’ve already mentioned that availability can be a problem. Save. Pine straw is often recommended for slopes and hillsides. Meanwhile, spruce or fir needles will be attached to the branch rather than a cluster. Let them dry in a basket or gently bruise the needles with a spoon to release the compounds, which will also produce more flavor for immediate use. During the winter solstice, Pagans used branches to decorate their homes and remind them that spring was on the way. Research them ahead of time so you know what to look for. No matter their drawbacks, I collect and use pine needles for my gardens. But if you can get your hands on some, whether a commercial product or your neighbor’s surplus, pine straw makes excellent and inexpensive mulch. If you already have native pines and junipers on your property, you know how thick the needles’ layers can be. All Rights Reserved. When ingested, pine can be used to treat colds and coughs, reducing phlegm and helping with sinus infections. It is also best to harvest the bark in the spring. Pine needles come in clusters of 1-6, most often found in 2-5. Follow. Now that we have discussed all things pine, let’s use them! Vote for this contender! Pine needles rarely bring weed seed with them. Pine needle mulch’s acidity remains at the soil’s surface and does not alter the soil around plant roots. Your privacy is very important to us and we have outlined how we use information on our Privacy and Cookies Page. You can also bathe in it to help with joint inflammation and to ease sore muscles. Pine needle tea is the most traditional way to utilize the herbal benefits of pine. Pine bark is especially convenient for topical uses. The beacon of green during the winter, pine trees have been around a LONG time. Hi, I’m Stephanie Rose. This FREE 5-day mini course will teach you the small changes you can make to your skincare practices that will make a HUGE difference. Check out my guide on herbal-infused vinegars for step by step instructions on how to infuse your own vinegar. And parabens. Best to use them as a top dressing on flower gardens, around roses, and places where weed and moisture control are desired. From aromatherapy to cleaning to medicinal benefits, learn how to use pine needles in daily life. Also, they block sunlight from reaching the seeds that are already in the soil, preventing them from germinating. Because pine needles break down slowly, they are not useful additives to turn directly into garden soils. They form a loose mat and stay put. If you live in a neighborhood where ponderosa pines grow freely, you know about too many pine needles. There are 45 trees in all, and they line a street that goes into the city’s historic downtown district. It is also important that you do not harvest any yew, a conifer often mistook as pine, but its needles are poisonous. What you may think is a pine tree, may not in fact be a pine tree! I often use different combinations of herbs to get different palettes for dishes. It doesn’t help that common names of trees can be misleading. For those who live up north, evergreens are some of the only greenery you will see for months. If it does not cover the soil fully, you will still have some weeds, and weeding in pine straw is not particularly pleasant. However, if you’ve never foraged before or are inexperienced, be sure to consult with someone who has some experience. Pine trees need some needles at their bases to protect their health.