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Plant type



20 - 80 ft Tall
20 - 40 ft Wide


Upright, Pyramidal, Upright Columnar

Growth rate

Fast, Slow







Flowering season

Spring, Winter

Common uses

Bank stabilization, Containers, Hedge

Foothill Pine (Pinus sabiniana) is a native tree that grows in northern, southern and central California. It is slow growing in nature and moderately long-lived. It grows in an upright form to a height of 80 feet, with active growth during the spring and summer. Flowers are yellow and bloom in the early spring. Leaves are medium green, and remain on the plant throughout the year. It tends to grow in places with poor soils, at elevations from 0-4500 feet.

In landscaping applications, with irrigation even once per month, this tree will grow quickly to 40-60 feet. It's fairly lacey form allows plenty of light to come through, so you can plant understory plants below without much problem.


Partial Shade, Full Sun


Low, Very Low

Summer irrigation

Max 1x / month once established

Ease of care


Cold tolerance

Tolerates cold to -20 - -10° F

Soil drainage


Soil description

Poor soils, serpentine soils. Tolerates serpentine soil..
Soil PH: 5 - 8


Fine to prune off bottom branches. Prune in winter when wood boring insects are less active.


For propagating by seed: 2-4 mos. stratification; for small lots, cracking seed coats first gives quicker germination ( USDA Forest Service 1974).

Sunset Zones

3, 4*, 5*, 6*, 7*, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14*, 15*, 16*, 17*, 18*, 19*, 20*, 21*, 22*, 23*, 24*

Blue Oak (Quercus douglasii), Pacific Sanicle (Sanicula crassicaulis), California Bedstraw (Galium californicum ssp. flaccidum), Phlox Leaved Bedstraw (Galium andrewsii), Coast Live Oak (Quercus agrifolia), Valley Oak (Quercus lobata), Common Yarrow (Achillea millefolium), Hollyleaf Redberry (Rhamnus ilicifolia)

Common Yarrow

Achillea millefolium

Phlox Leaved Bedstraw

Galium andrewsii

California Bedstraw

Galium californicum ssp. flaccidum

Coast Live Oak

Quercus agrifolia


Butterflies and moths supported

3 confirmed and 92 likely

Confirmed Likely

Common Gray|Cranberry Spanworm

Anavitrinella pampinaria

Monterey Pine Needle Miner

Argyresthia pilatella

Orange Tortrix Moth

Argyrotaenia franciscana

Western Pine Elfin

Callophrys eryphon

Site type

places with poor soils

Plant communities

Foothill Woodland,