Native to southern and south-western Europe and extensively planted on the Atlantic coast of south west France.
Very limited provenance testing has been carried out; preferred seed sources should be from the Landes region of France ideally using improved material from French breeding programmes.
Although planted in Britain since 1600s, sensitivity to cold and exposure restricted its use to southern and coastal regions. A light demanding pioneer species adapted to acid poor or medium fertility soils and of moderately dry to moist soil moisture status. Only suitable on sites in southern Britain where it can grow faster than Corsican pine. It does not tolerate peat or wet gley soils and is not suited to alkaline sites. Seems not to withstand temperatures below -18°C and is only moderately tolerant of exposure.
Pests and pathogens
It is quite susceptible to red band needle blight and is likely to be affected by Heterobasidion (Fomes root and butt rot), especially on dryer sites with mineral soils. Infection by pine wilt nematode, which has established in Portugal, can also result in high mortality rates for pine species such as maritime pine
This is a species which could play a larger role in forests in southern Britain and coastal regions with climate warming if improved varieties were used.
Maritime pine is categorised as a Plot-stage species. These are species that have not been planted on any significant scale but have demonstrated silvicultural characteristics in trial plots and have qualities suitable for forestry objectives to justify further testing and development.