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

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

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Pine trees are native to most locations within the Northern Hemisphere and give many regions green scenery and rich natural habitats. While pine trees are some of the oldest on Earth at over 200 million years old, they are not the fastest.

How fast your pine tree grows may affect your decision to plant it in your garden or yard, although there are other factors you should consider, whatever your plan.

What Are the Fastest-Growing Pine Trees for Privacy?

Most pine trees grow roughly one to two 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. These 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 two feet per year, although you can boost this number up to over three feet. This pine tree also features long needles and large pinecones and grows in an oval shape.

To protect the privacy of your home or to make nice street trees, these pine trees are great options. All of them grow rapidly, with at least 24 inches of potential annual growth, and are able to grow in a variety of locations.

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 is able to 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 in 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 in the heights of pine trees, which is especially nice if you like the sounds of birds or have pesky insects 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 two feet annually, with some, such as the Canary Island pine, able to grow more than three feet each year.

If you want to grow a protective natural shield around your house or yard, pine trees are a great option. These trees tend to grow very fast, and in the right conditions, you can have your tree or trees growing at 36 inches per year.

Factors Affecting the Growth Rate of Pine Trees

Pine Tree Covered in Rain Drops

Numerous 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, insect infestations, and many more 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.

Final Thoughts

In the world of trees, many types of pine trees grow very fast, with most coming in around 12 to 24 inches of annual growth. There are a few kinds of pine trees that grow exceptionally fast, and are great for planting if you want to give your house or property more privacy.

The Eastern white pine, the Austrian pine, and the 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.

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.

A few factors affect how quickly your pine tree grows, although the most important factor is the environment you plant it in. 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.

Before you go: Now is the perfect time to start tracking your gardening progress, and I created a garden journal to do exactly that. Click the image below to see it in action and to get your own copy.

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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.