Chir pine

Chir pine

Pinus roxburghii (Pinaceae)

Common Name:

Chir pine

Scientific Name:

Pinus roxburghii (Pinaceae)

Alternative common names:

Tjirden (Afrikaans)


A coniferous tree up to 20m high or more, with conical or oval crowns. Large, ascending branches with secondary shoots absent from trunk with very thick, fissured bark. Light to bright green leaf needles in bundles of three. Light brown cylindrical cones 15-20cm long. This pine invades grasslands, usually on dry mountain slopes

Additional Information

Where does this species come from?

Asia (subtropical Himalayas)

What is its invasive status in South Africa?

Existing legislation: CARA 2002 - Category 2 NEMBA - Category 2

Where in South Africa is it a problem?


How does it spread?

Spread by seeds

Why is it a problem?

Competes with and replaces indigenous species. Dense stands can reduce water runoff and stream flow from mountain catchments, reduce grazing, and pose a fire hazard which threatens the survival of indigenous animal and plant species

What does it look like?

General description: Coniferous tree up to 20m high or more; with a conical or oval crown; similar to Pinus canariensis but branches larger, distinctly ascending, secondary shoots absent from trunk; bark very thick and fissured.
Leaves: Needles, light to bright green, in bundles of three, 150-300 mm long.
Flowers: Does not produce any flowers.
Fruit/Seeds: Produces cone which is light brown, woody, cylindric-ovoid, large, 150-220mm long; cone scales elongated and reflexed

Does the plant have any uses?

Used for timber, shelter, shade, ornament

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