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Formal Form Bristlecone Pine

Pinus aristata 'Formal Form'

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Formal Form Bristlecone Pine (Pinus aristata 'Formal Form') at Tagawa Gardens

Formal Form Bristlecone Pine

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Formal Form Bristlecone Pine (Pinus aristata 'Formal Form') at Tagawa Gardens

Formal Form Bristlecone Pine

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  10 feet

Spread:  5 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  4

Other Names:  Pinus longaeva


This variety is a slow-growing, compact and dense with a narrow, uniform shape; bundled needles radiate from branches resembling bottle brushes; an excellent choice for rock gardens, or small landscape areas

Ornamental Features

Formal Form Bristlecone Pine is a dwarf conifer which is primarily valued in the landscape or garden for its distinctively pyramidal habit of growth. It has forest green foliage with hints of silvery blue which emerges light green in spring. The needles remain forest green throughout the winter.

Landscape Attributes

Formal Form Bristlecone Pine is a dense multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with a distinctive and refined pyramidal form. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other landscape plants with less refined foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance shrub. When pruning is necessary, it is recommended to only trim back the new growth of the current season, other than to remove any dieback. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Formal Form Bristlecone Pine is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Rock/Alpine Gardens
  • General Garden Use

Planting & Growing

Formal Form Bristlecone Pine will grow to be about 10 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 5 feet. It has a low canopy, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live to a ripe old age of 300 years or more; think of this as a heritage shrub for future generations!

This shrub should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for xeriscaping or the moisture-conserving landscape. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is quite intolerant of urban pollution, therefore inner city or urban streetside plantings are best avoided. This is a selection of a native North American species.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Rock  Garden 
Texture  Plant Form  Winter Value 
Ornamental Features

This Plant Library is for informational purposes only. We may or may not carry the items listed. During many times of the year, we may carry many more plants in our store than are listed in the Plant Library. Please contact us directly at 303-690-4722 or visit our store for current availability and for assistance.