Pinus contorta, or Lodgepole Pine, is a native of western North America. It is an evergreen conifer that grows to heights of up to 80 feet tall.
Pinus contorta is easily identifiable by its long, slender needles which are twisted at the base. These needles are green above and silver below. The cones of Pinus contorta are also very distinctive; they are small and round with red-brown scales.
Lodgepole Pine prefers dry, sandy soils in open areas such as hillsides and ridges. It is often found in association with other pines, Douglas fir, and Rocky Mountain juniper. Lodgepole Pines grow slowly and live for several hundred years.
The best time to see Lodgepole Pine is in the winter, when its needles are most visible against the snow. In the summer, the needles are often hidden by the branches. Pinus contorta is a beautiful tree and well worth seeking out in the wild!