Pinus elliottii 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Pinopsida Pinales Pinaceae

Scientific Name: Pinus elliottii Engelm.
Infra-specific Taxa Assessed:
Common Name(s):
English Slash Pine
Taxonomic Source(s): Farjon, A. 2010. A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.
Taxonomic Notes: Two varieties are recognized: the typical variety and var. densa which is restricted to the southern part of Florida, including the Florida Keys.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2011-03-25
Assessor(s): Farjon, A.
Reviewer(s): Thomas, P. & Stritch, L.
The wide range, abundance, and recent increase of this species place it under the category Least Concern. This is not altered by the more limited distribution and Near Threatened status  of var. densa which is assessed separately (the typical variety is not assessed separately as it would also be Least Concern).
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Recorded from southeastern USA, from North and South Carolina to Mississippi, southward to Florida Keys. The extent of occurrence and area of occupancy are both beyond the threatened thresholds.
Countries occurrence:
United States (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina)
Additional data:
Lower elevation limit (metres):1
Upper elevation limit (metres):150
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Pinus elliottii is abundant in several forest cover types within its natural range. Forestry and timber cutting practices have caused it to spread to drier sites than where it formerly occurred, replacing (logged) stands of Pinus palustris, and invading abandoned farmland.
Current Population Trend:Increasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:No
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Pinus elliottii is a subtropical pine growing in a warm and humid climate at low elevations. Most rain falls in summer as short cloudbursts to a total average of 1,270 mm per year; winters are mild to warm and dry although frosts do occur especially on clear nights. It especially thrives in wetlands, where it is abundant on the sandy islands of extensive swamps such as Okefenokee and the Everglades and on pond margins and along drainages. Its roots need aerated soil, so it avoids the swamps proper. In the Florida Keys, the variety densa occurs on karst limestone, an extremely nutrient poor rock type derived from ancient coral reefs. Pinus elliottii can form pure stands, or mixed pine forest with P. taeda and P. serotina. Other conifers that can occur with P. elliottii are Chamaecyparis thyoides and Taxodium distichum; broadleaf trees are e.g. Nyssa sylvatica and N. aquatica, Magnolia virginiana, and Persea borbonia. The understorey is often dominated by shrubby palms or palmettos (Sabal palmetto, Serenoa repens). The southernmost populations (var. densa) develop a 'grass stage' as an adaptation to frequent ground fires. Initially, seedlings produce very little apical growth and develop an extensive root system; after fire damage new buds are formed at the apex of a very short stem near the ground. Photosynthesis is with juvenile 'grass' leaves only. After some years, a sudden apical growth elongates the stem rapidly without branching, lifting the growing points above the heat of fires. At this stage normal subapical branching begins and fascicles with adult needle leaves are formed.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:No
Generation Length (years):20

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Slash Pine is a main source for naval stores, a term used first by the English for course resin products used in the navy to make wooden ships waterproof and tar the rigging. This industry is one of the oldest in the United States and has supplied huge quantities of resin and turpentine since colonial times. In the past, resin was virtually the only product harvested from Slash Pine (the method of tapping gave the tree its vernacular name), reaching a production peak in the 1930s. After that date production sharply declined due to labour costs and other market forces, but plantation trees are still tapped for this purpose up to 20 years of age, after which the timber is harvested for the pulp industry, yielding sulfate turpentine as a by-product. Selection of high resin yielding trees has produced commercially available seedlings for this purpose and such seedlings have been exported to many tropical countries. The other uses of the wood are mainly as roundwood for poles and posts, often after treatment for conservation. Bark and needles are used as a mulch in horticulture, but the tree itself is rarely planted in gardens.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): No specific range wide threats have been identified for this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is known from several protected areas throughout its range.

Citation: Farjon, A. 2013. Pinus elliottii. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T42361A2975203. . Downloaded on 18 August 2018.
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