Forest, Wildlife & Environment Department Government of Gilgit-Baltistan

Pinus gerardiana (Pinaceae)

Common name: Chilghoza pine
Local Name: Chalghoza, Thulash


Trees 10-20(25) m tall. Crown is usually deep, wide and open with long, erect branches, but crown narrower and shallower in dense forest. Bark very flaky, peeling to reveal light greyish-green patches, similar to Pinus bungeana. Branchlets smooth, olive-green. Leaves in fascicles of 3, 6-10 cm long, finer than those of P. bungeana, spreading stiffly, sheaths falling after 1 year. Female cones 12-20 cm long, 10 cm wide when open, with wrinkled, reflexed apophyses and an umbo curved inward at the base. Seeds >2 cm long with a rudimentary wing (Farjon 1984, Richardson and Rundel 1998). The seeds are not shed but are retained by the wing adhering to the base of the scale above (Lanner 1996).

Distribution and Ecology:

Potentially located at lower slopes of Diamer District and sparsely located in the lower Astore, Nagar and Ghizer. Himal: E Afghanistan, N Pakistan, India: Jammu-Kashmir, Tibet (Farjon 1998). Mostly grows in valleys at 2000-3350 m elevation (Farjon 1984), in the dry temperate forest of the inner ranges of the Himalaya, where the summer monsoon is weak and precipitation, mostly in the form of snow, rarely exceeds 1000 mm per year. In these forests it occurs with Cedrus deodara, Quercus ilex and polycarpous (Bhattacharyya et al. 1988). Hardy to Zone 7 (cold hardiness limit between -17.7°C and -12.2°C) (Bannister and Neuner 2001).