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Life History and Disturbance Response of Pinus rigida (Pitch Pine)
Family: Pinaceae
Guild: pioneer, dry-site, shade intolerant
Functional Lifeform: small-medium evergreen conifer
Ecological Role: This species grows in poor sandy or gravely soils, such as those found along river valley's or low coastal areas. Pitch pine can tolerate a wide variety of moisture conditions. In the New Jersey pine barrens pitch pine is a dominant species, elsewhere it associates with red, white and shortleaf pine, as well as oaks and hickories
Lifespan, yrs (typical/max): 200/350
Shade Tolerance: intolerant
Height, m: 15-30yrs
Canopy Tree: yes
Pollination Agent: wind
Seeding, yrs (begins/optimal/declines): 3/10/?
Mast Frequency, yrs: 4-9 yrs
New Cohorts Source: seeds or sprouts
Flowering Dates: late spring
Flowers/Cones Damaged by Frost: fall for non-serotinous cones
Seed Banking: several years in cones
Cold Stratification Required: yes
Seed Type/Dispersal Distance/Agent: winged/<100m/wind
Season of Germination: variable
Seedling Rooting System: taproot
Sprouting: sprout from dormant buds along the bole of the tree or at the base
Establishment Seedbed Preferences:
Substrate: mineral
Light: open conditions preferred
Moisture: variable
Temperature: neutral
Disturbance Response:
Fire: Pitch pine has thick bark and can withstand low to moderate fire. Pitch pine can sprout rapidly following fire damage and some individuals possess serotinous cones and basal stem crooks which aid this species in post fire establishment.
Air Pollution: