Pinus halepensis

Aleppo pine                                                                                          Κοινό πεύκο

Pinaceae - Pine Family                                                                       Gymnosperm


The Aleppo pine is the dominant tree of the Mediterranean evergreen forest which covers a large area of Skopelos Island, with trees extending from the summit of Mount Delphi to the edge of the sea. The Aleppo pine is found growing naturally only in the Mediterranean basin, predominantly to the west but extending as far as Greece. It is entirely suited to the local environment being very tolerant of high temperature and drought. Unfortunately it is susceptible to fire, particularly during the hot summer months.

The young trees are the typical pyramidal shape of conifers but mature trees have broad billowing crowns. The leaves are bright green, long needles which are arranged in whorls around the stem. P. halepensis has separate male and female flowers present on the same plant. the cones take 3 years to develop and often flowers, young green and more mature brown cones can be seen on the same branch. The cones have a short stalk and always point downwards.

Theophrastus, the ancient Greek botanist described the use of P. halepensis in boatbuilding: "For triremes some make such parts of Aleppo pine because of its lightness."

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Pinus halepensis - bark