When visiting the Sierra Nevada, one is likely to encounter this stately conifer. But many people don’t realize they can see the ponderosa pine in special places in Sonoma County and surrounding areas. Long, gray-green needles form bushy clusters at the ends of branches with cantaloupe-sized cones developing at the very tips. The bark at maturity is a colorful patchwork of orange-tan plates separated by deep grooves of dark brown. This pine can grow a couple of feet a year, eventually becoming a large tree not suited for the small garden. Provide full sun to light shade with occasional deep waterings when young. Needs decent drainage. Deer resistant.
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