Forest 46 - Cedros Island pine

Pinus radiata variety binata

This forest contains the same variety as Forest 90 but those trees are native to Guadalupe Island.

Pinus radiata var binta Cedros. Photo not from the Arboretum, by L 

Other common names

Radiata pine

Origin of the species name

Pinus is classical Latin for pine; radiata is from Latin and is said to refer to the radial markings on the scales of the cone; binata is from Latin refers to the pine needles being in pairs.



Date planted

November 2010


Cedros Island pines have an expected lifespan of 80-90 years.

Cones and leaves of Pinus radiata var binata Cedros. Photo not from the Arboretum, by L Hawkes (2)

General description

This is a medium-sized conifer with a single trunk which, in the wild, is often forked or branched near the ground. The bark is often deeply fissured, rough and scaly. The branches are spreading or ascending to form a dense crown. The leaves are needle shaped and usually in groups of two. Pollen cones are orange-brown and cylindrical. Seed cones take about two years to mature. They are brown, egg-shaped and more symmetrical than those of Pinus radiata var. radiata. Height 25m Spread 18m.

Natural distribution and habitat  

This variety is native to Cedros Island in the Pacific Ocean, about 100 kms west of Baja California Norte in Mexico where it grows on rocky mountain slopes above 300 m, often surrounded by fog.

Conservation status

Tree numbers on Cedros Island are fairly stable and because this is a totally isolated population, it has the potential to provide genetic diversity. It is considered vulnerable because of the removal of natural fire succession and the possible spread of disease from the mainland.

Planting pattern

Planted in curved lines following the contours.


Radiata pine is the most widely planted tree species in the world. The wood is used for pulp, construction, carpentry, veneers, furniture, laminated wood, crates and boxes. The bark is often used as garden mulch. The tree has been widely planted in parks and as windbreaks. Both the Cedros and Guadalupe Island populations provide potential sources of genetic diversity.

Further reading

Farjon, A (2010) A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Brill.