Skip to Content

How Fast Do Pine Trees Grow? (And Which Grow the Fastest?)

How Fast Do Pine Trees Grow? (And Which Grow the Fastest?)

Share this post:

Disclaimer: Some links found on this page might be affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and make a purchase, I might earn a commission. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

If you’re looking to add natural privacy or shade to your yard quickly, pine trees are an excellent option. As a sturdy, fast-growing species that thrives across many climates, pines can easily adapt to a range of conditions while rapidly reaching mature heights of 50-100 feet on average. 

Not all pines grow at the same pace, though. Depending on the type, your pine could put on up to 2-3 feet or more each year when properly cared for. 

On that account, I’m going to cover pine growth rates and habits to help you pick the perfect pine for your needs in this article. Stick around!

What Are the Fastest-Growing Pine Trees for Privacy?

Most pine trees grow roughly 1-2 feet per year, although some breeds of pine trees grow more quickly than this. A number of conditions affect pine trees, too, some of which are region-based and others that you can control to an extent.

If you have an interest in growing pine trees for privacy or for adding to the foliage surrounding your property, some types of pine trees will suit you especially well. 

Here are three types of pines that grow fast and offer you a range of possibilities:

Eastern White Pine

Eastern White Pine

The first pine tree on this list that grows surprisingly fast is the eastern pine tree, which is a hardy, tall-growing pine. At full maturity, you can expect your white pine to grow up to 80 feet high, although you can find ancient trees of this sort today towering at over 150 feet.

If you plant your tree in prime conditions with about four hours of direct sunlight every day and acidic, well-draining soil, the annual growth goes as high as 36 inches. 

At the least, you can expect close to 24 inches of annual height increase, which puts the Eastern white pine in the fast-growing category for pine trees.

Austrian Pine

Another formidable tree species in the pine group, the Austrian pine, shares many characteristics with the eastern white pine, including its soil preference, which is acidic and well-draining.

Austrian pines do not grow as tall as other pines, with most ending up around 40 to 60 feet tall at maturity. Your standard growth rate for an Austria pine is up to 24 inches, which is still relatively fast for pine trees, albeit not as quick as the Eastern white.

Canary Island Pine

By far the most exotic pine tree on this list, the Canary Island pine tree also boasts an extremely fast growth rate. While this pine tree is sensitive to dry soil and other conditions, it makes up for it with its beauty and lighting-fast growth rate.

In the best conditions, you can grow your Canary Island pine tree at over 2 feet per year, although you can boost this number up to over 3 feet. This pine tree also features long needles and large pinecones and grows in an oval shape.

The Many Benefits of Pine Trees

Pine Trees In Backyard

Apart from their role in making up forests and environments around the world, pine trees offer a host of benefits to you, whether you want privacy or you want to tap into the many other features. 

For some background information, pine trees are native to the Northern Hemisphere as well as a few tropical parts of the Southern Hemisphere. These trees thrive best in cooler climates, although they are capable of surviving and growing to full maturity in warmer climates too. 

For most types of pines, poor soil quality is not an issue, which is a nice feature if you do not fertilize your soil or the area you live in has poor soil.

Provides Shade

Pine trees give great shade cover after they grow to a reasonable height. You can use this height for whatever purpose you decide on in just a few years, or less if you decide to buy a pine tree that is already a few years old.

For houses where you want to control the amount of sunlight you receive, or for a patio where you are sick of the sun, pine trees are a great natural solution. 

Thanks to the many dense pine tree variations, not much sun can bypass the crown of the tree.

Solid Windbreaks

Controlling the amount of wind that enters your yard often helps you regulate your house’s temperature and the amount of wind that enters your garden. 

Limiting this wind can save you money on your energy bill and save your plants or flowers from destruction.

Provide Wildlife Habitats

Tall pine trees offer a habitat for many forms of wildlife, from insects to larger animals. Birds also like to build nests at the top of pine trees, which is especially nice if you like the sounds of birds in your garden.

Many varieties of pine trees are resistant to the elements, including inclement weather and wildlife such as bears or deer. The structure of pine trees also means that it is very difficult for animals to crawl up the trunk of a tree.

Pine Trees Grow Relatively Quickly

Pine trees are also great at growing quickly, some more than others. 

Many varieties of pine trees grow at least 2 feet annually, with some, such as the Canary Island pine, able to grow more than 3 feet each year.

Factors Affecting the Growth Rate of Pine Trees

Pine Tree Covered In Rain Drops

Several factors affect how quickly pine trees grow, including the amount of sunlight a tree sees consistently, rainfall, the nutrients in the soil, and topographic location. 

Natural disasters or disturbances, including fires, floods, and insect infestations, among other factors, also influence the rate your pine trees grow.

Tree Genetics

Just as with humans and many other living organisms, genetics play a major role in the characteristics of pine trees. In fact, scientists continue discovering ways to adjust the chemical structure and traits of trees and plants, including leaf size and many more.

Although small changes between pine trees do not change the height or characteristics of a given tree as much as other factors, it is important to remember the variation between plants with different genes.

Environmental Factors

Apart from the genetic factor, the immeasurable number of environmental variables heavily affect a pine tree’s growth and ability to survive. 

Cold weather, well-drained and dry soil, and lots of sunlight are pretty much the only conditions that a pine tree needs to survive. However, remember that some types of pine trees are more sensitive and may not thrive in certain conditions.

If you live in a tropical climate or are considering planting a pine tree next to a tropical tree, your pine might struggle to compete with the tropical tree, although this is not a likely situation. 

Your specific type of pine tree will respond to environmental conditions slightly differently than other types, which can encourage extra tree growth.

Pruning Your Tree

Pruning, or deliberately trimming your tree, helps encourage positive tree growth on young trees as well as older trees. You can remove diseased or damaged branches from your pine tree to help the tree continue growing, especially in younger trees.

If your pine tree looks unnaturally thin, one way to try to make it look fuller is by pruning your tree. Consistent pruning, especially during the spring, can make your pine tree or trees denser and fuller with more growth in the pruned areas.

Other Fast-Growing Evergreens to Consider

Pine trees aren’t the only quick-growing evergreen options for privacy and windbreaks. Here are a few alternatives with rapid growth rates: 

  • Norway Spruce: This evergreen grows up to 2-3 feet per year in ideal conditions. It has a conical form with downward sweeping branches that provide excellent privacy, and it does well in cold climates. 
  • White Fir: Can grow 2 feet or more every year. It has a unique pyramid shape and horizontal branches that fill out nicely. Tolerates heat better than other firs. 
  • Green Giant Arborvitae: A popular fast-growing plant that’s excellent for privacy purposes. It grows around 3-4 feet per year when young. What’s great about this plant is that its natural columnar shape doesn’t need much trimming. It also handles cold winters well if gradually exposed. 
  • Leyland Cypress: Grows up to 3-4 feet each year. Its neat, formal look will lend your garden a sophisticated and organized feel. Just keep in mind that this plant often outgrows suburban spaces. 

These evergreens share a few similarities with pines but have their own unique growth habits, size potential, and aesthetic qualities to consider. 

Final Thoughts

From providing shade to providing an environment for animals to thrive in, pine trees offer a host of benefits that make them some of the most versatile, well-rounded trees. 

Pine trees also make for outstanding windbreaks that protect both your house and the things surrounding it, whether it be a garden or other, less-rigid trees.

The Eastern white pine, Austrian pine, and Canary Island pine are all great candidates if you wish to plant pines that grow quickly. Another benefit of all pine trees is how formidable they are, which is just one benefit among many that almost all types of pine trees have to offer.

A few factors affect how quickly your pine tree grows, with the most important factor being the environment in which you plant it. Although different types of pine trees respond to natural conditions differently, the best conditions for most pine trees are dry soils with lots of sunlight access and rainfall.

All of these traits make fast-growing pine trees some of the best candidates for tree privacy.

Share this post:


Monday 12th of February 2024

It's my understanding that the Pinus radiata, the Monterey pine is one of the fastest growing pines with spectacular growth of up to 5 meters per year shown at plantations in Australia.

Aulbert West

Monday 4th of April 2022

I live in Brookeland Texas and have pine trees growing naturally in my yard. Most are at least 40 feet tall. There are some very small things that I think are baby pine trees growing in my yard. I was wondering how fast they would grow to pot them up and sell them. How tall would they need to be? What I have is over a foot tall and I have been here two months.