Pinus pinea (Umbrella / Italian Stone Pine) seeds
Fabulous pine tree with a striking, umbrella shaped form which dominates the landscape in Tuscany, Italy. Not often seen in the UK, these striking trees deserve to be more widely grown. For that authentic Italian look they only need the lower branches removing as they grow. This pruning tradition shows off the attractive, craggy, orange streaked bark to great effect. Very well suited to sandy soils and coastal conditions, they are also drought tolerant. Planted in a row, the Stone Pine makes an effective and attractive screen. Also perfect for creating Bonsai trees and will happily live in a container if you have limited space.
Winner of the RHS Award of Garden Merit.
Height: to 20m - prune to any size
Position: Sun and well drained soil
Packet of 10 seeds
RHS Award of Garden Merit
This plant/cultivar has been awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit because it has proved to be reliable in appropriate conditions and a good performing plant. For more information on RHS award of Garden Merit plants visit rhs.org.uk/plants
Sowing Instructions: Sow at any time of the year. Mix equal parts of good quality seed compost, eg. John Innes, with vermiculite, perlite or horticultural grit and water until just moist. Sow seeds very thinly on the surface, then just cover them with a layer of vermiculite, perlite or grit. Seal inside a polythene bag and place in the fridge for 6 weeks, checking them weekly to ensure the compost is still moist. After this, move to a propagator or other warm place and maintain an optimum temperature of 13-15C. Germination should take place in 1-2 months. Note: Germination can be very erratic, so sow thinly and prick out the seedlings as they become large enough to handle disturbing the rest of the compost as little as possible.
An alternative method is to sow in pots as above during late summer to early winter then place in a cold frame and let nature take its course as the seasons change with the seedlings emerging the next spring.
Growing Instructions: Transplant seedlings when large enough to handle into 7.5cm pots and grow on in a cold frame or nursery bed for a year or two then plant in their final position in a sunny position.