Care of Austrian Pine

I am trying my luck with an Austrian Pine. I have read quite, a bit and discussed a little bit, regarding the care and timing of tasks. But I am looking for suggestions or be directed to a guide for Austrian Pine care.
I have read some conflicting recommendations on care and particularly Pinching these Pines. I was hoping someone that has experience, and success, with this single flush pines. I would appreciate your input.

I don’t know of any guides specifically aimed at Austrian black pines, but a guide for white pine or short-needled domestic pines like lodgepole pines will be a good starting point.

If you have questions about specific steps for your tree, feel free to post a photo and we can go from there.

You mean Casuarina tree?

Austrian pine is Pinus nigra - Australian pine is Casuarina, not a true pine but a tree with pine-like foliage.

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Thanks for your response. Here is a photo of the tree. What do you think ? Why is it not a pine ? Everything I have read has referred to Pinus Nigra as a pine. It has needles, bears cones, Hence a conifer, and is a single flush species.

That’s right - it’s casuarina that’s not in the pine family.

The tree actually looks like black pine, though it’s hard to tell from the photo. Austrian pines typically have shorter, darker-colored foliage.

As for the care, I’d be curious to hear about the conflicting info you’ve heard. The approaches I’m familiar with agree about no decandling, and no cutback to stimulate back budding unless a given shoot is growing vigorously. Based on the photo, I’d want to see the tree get stronger for a year or two, particularly the lower branches, before trying to stimulate back buds.

Yes that is my plan. I would like to repot in the spring because it is really root bound . But I realize if the tree is already stressed repotting could wait. I will fertilize lightly and increase as summer rolls on. I will worry about those other things when I can see the tree flourishing. Actually these needles left untouched can get about 6" long. Longer than a Ponderosa. I have A black pine in my yard and the candles come out about 12-16" long and the needles about 4-6". I have a few Mugos which I really like. I believe they
are much more tolerant of messing with. The Austrians a bit more tempramental, But not so much as the
JBP. I currently have a JBP but I am Leary about it where I live in N. Illinois. Been in single digits last few nights.

I have had several Austrian Black Pine over the past decade! I can say for certain that they are less vigorous than JBP or JRP.
The tree that you have shown above does not look like any of the Pinus Niger that i have worked with. Distinct differences in the bark pattern and needle length. The color is lighter than normal, however that could be watering routine or even lighting.
Pinus Niger is typically very dark green with shorter and thicker needles. One characteristic that should be evident is the way the branches emerge from the trunk, in Pinus Niger they typically have more of an extra fold or bulge around the base. The apical buds are also typically smaller and darker brown with red tinges, sharper point than JBP. JBP buds extend as whitish candles, Austrian Black Pine. For illustration, this is a picture of an Austrian Black Pine that has a grafted scion from a JBP. ( i was experimenting) The grafted scion is the right side with longer needles. It clearly illustrated the needle size , shape and color difference.

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I agree, generally Austrian needles are darker. I think this tree was from a collection that had been pretty much neglected by someone in failing health. I purchased this tree from a nursery that is pretty well know for their bonsai. “The Hidden Garden” in Willowbrook, IL He has Walter Pall come and speak there a few times a year. I found this tree amongst a group of JBPs. When I began inquiring about it, he said you know this is not a JBP, it is an Austrian Pine, Single flush. I did not know it was an AP. I am not that knowledgeable at this point. So, I have proceeded on that directive. As I said I will just try to get and keep the tree healthy before any insults.

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Here is another, Not much better, shot of my Austrian Pine. Don’t know if this is any help.
I will try to get some better shots. weather permitting.

This is a photo of a European Black Pine which is one of several names that Pinus Nigra goes by, evidently. this is a photo of one of Walter Palls EBPs. I hope he does not object to my sharing his image for the purpose of clarification. But you can see that the tree has pretty light green needles. Also considerably shorter that field grown. also similar bark
Sorry I did not know about editing previous replies instead of replying to replies. I will try to improve that.

Entirely possible with variations in care, climate, substrate etc. The coming years should help clarify as you work with the tree.
Sounds like the advice you received is spot on if the identification is correct.
With the experimental tree above i decandled the Pinus Niger portion and the JBP scion at the same time. The response was dramatically different. Even though the JBP scion was grafted on Pinus Niger it quickly responded, backbudded and rapidly outgrew the rest of the tree! The Pinus Niger portion did respond to decandling, but so weakly that i would not reccomend the practise.

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If you aren’t clear on the health of the roots, I’d suggest repotting this spring so you can make sure the tree is growing in good soil. That’s usually the best thing to do to improve the tree’s health.

Thanks Jonas, I asked the gentleman I bought the tree from and he said the same thing. He said even if the tree is root bound, it will be OK til spring. And more damage would occur by transplanting this late than waiting til the buds are plump, Aprilish ??

That sounds right to me. The ideal time to repot is just before you begin to see the buds swell as roots typically begin to grow before the buds start to elongate. If you see signs of movement - am not sure when that will be in your area - that’s a great time to repot.