Landowner Fact Sheets

loblolly pine Pinus taeda play

Loblolly pine is the most important commercial timber species in the U.S. southeast. It accounts for more than one-half of the standing pine volume in this region. Loblolly's needles are 6 to 9 inches long and grow in bundles of 3.

range map Click to see more images. wood grain

Loblolly pine is typically regenerated by clearcutting followed by planting with genetically improved seedlings. Group selections of sufficient size, shelterwoods, and seed-tree methods work reasonably well.

Loblolly is very widely planted and often seeds naturally into old fields. Loblolly is often found growing on low, moist sites with poor surface drainage.


A medium to large tree can reach well over 100 feet tall, self-prunes well and develops a fairly straight trunk and an oval, somewhat open crown.

Timber Value
Loblolly pine is used for a great many products, such as plywood, construction lumber, and pulpwood.

Wildlife Value
Both natural loblolly stands and plantations provide habitat for a variety of wildlife. Old growth stands provide nesting sites for the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker, as well as ospreys and bald eagles.
Attracts turkey, deer, squirrel, various birds such as warblers, nuthatches, red crossbills, ospreys, bald eagles, and red-cockaded woodpeckers

Insects and Diseases

Fun Facts
Loblolly pine is the most important timber species in the Southeast, and can often be seen in large plantations. The red-cockaded woodpecker excavates nest cavities in old pine trees in the process of succumbing to heart-rot. It is the only North American woodpecker to exclusively use living trees for nesting sites. Such sites can be more easily seen by the pine sap oozing from the nest area, than by the presence of the small bird itself.

Latin Meaning
Pinus: Latin name for pine from Greek "pitus" / taeda: a torch of pine wood - resinous

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Landowner Factsheets © 2004 Virginia Tech Forestry Department, all rights reserved. Text, images, and programming by: Dr. Jeff Kirwan, Dr. John R. Seiler, John A. Peterson, Edward C. Jensen, Guy Phillips, or Andrew S. Meeks.