This month we celebrate one of the world’s largest Lodgepole pines located in San Bernardino National Forest in California.
Over 450 years in age, this 10-story-plus-tall tree and its surrounding environment have been protected since 1891.
Lodgepole pine, botanically known as Pinus contorta, is native throughout western North America. It can be found as far north as the Yukon and south to Baja CA. This pine grows best in moist well-drained sandy or gravelly soils.
The native Americans used wood from these pines as poles for their lodges, thus the common name. They also mashed the inner bark to make bread and the needles were brewed into tea.
Lodgepole forests provide food and cover for birds and mammals and the trees are hosts for the larvae of the Western Pine Elfin butterfly.
A bit more information: If you make it to the San Bernardino area, stop by for a visit. Take a few minutes to walk down the Champion Lodgepole Pine trail to see this champion and enjoy the surrounding beauty.