Pine tree specialitst needed

Once upon a time…when I started to share my enthusiasm for trees and bonsai art with friends one of them got me a bag of ‘mix of seeds for bonsai’ I knew even back then there is no such thing but anyway threw them to pots with soil in fall. There was some unusual heat wave in UK reaching temperatures of 15-20’C in November hence some of these seeds emerged. Yes, in November :slight_smile: Due to very mild winters in south-east part of UK 3 out of 6 made it through possibly cos they are pine trees.
This year they will turn 4 years and I’m wondering whether there is a chance to identify exact species at this stage or should I wait till they have proper bark…? Only thing I can tell right now is couple of them are 2-needled pines and the third is some spruce.
Can anyone identify them specifically?


D id the seed look like this?

The third tree looks like a Red Pine to me.
Japanese red pine, (Pinus densiflora).

The other two are pretty certalinly Black Pines.
Japanese black pine (Pinus thunbergii)
Both need protection in the winter, so the ones you lost may not have tolerated the temperature swings.
Only an old guy opinion… hope to learn more from others that respond.

Thank you @Bonsai_bob :slight_smile: Your opinion means a lot to me! First time I asked emailing herons bonsai Peter Chan replied with answer but rather guessing scots pine too! They were super tiny just emerged and I think I was way to curious to find out…thinking about it now I wouldn’t bother anyone with such question at that stage hahahaa
Would you mind me asking what makes you to say it’s scots pine? Just purely out of curiosity and admiration you can do so as I can’t tell even with tree encyclopedia in my hands :joy:

Re seeds: honestly it was paper back full of all sort of seeds (different sizes, shapes, color…etc.) with no any detailed info on it so I really had no idea what will come out of it. Also none of them had scale anymore as your picture shows.
Couple of them didn’t make it cos they looked like deciduous seedlings and like I mentioned they germinated in November. I could have possibly save them moving them indoors but I decided to leave this on mother nature as well as never protect them from winter. Not that I don’t care about them I just think there is no need for it as Pines plus I’m in South London and temperature rarely goes below 0. Well, I’m ignoring the week in March of this year :joy:
Another one (same as the one you are saying is Red Pine) didn’t make it as it grew next to one of those Scots Pines and when I was separating them I had to sacrifice massive root ball to do so which I guessed after it died it belonged to it. I actually found a picture when they were 1 year old and if you look closely at the middle very vigorously grown you can see Scots Pine on the right of it pushing it down. That’s the one not surviving the separation year after.

Thanks again for your help!!! :+1:


I thought the first two photos look like Japanese BLACK pine, not Scotts pine.
The description of Pinus thunbergii are as follows.
The needles are in fascicles of two with a white sheath at the base, 7–12 cm long

Scots Pine Pinus sylvestris have relatively shorter needles and has a orangish red bark when mature.
I cannot b.e sure what the pine is this young, but hope they stay strong and grow quickly. Good luck with your little trees!!

Wow… Where did I read Scots Pine?? :joy:

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Personal guess is bottom tree has immature needles of Italian Stone Pine. If those are single needle immature foliage. Other two upper tree my guess is Scots pine(if seeds are from Euro species). Reason is needles are unruly like Scots and candles thin like scots Pine.

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Thank you @WLKeugene for your opinion. Will keep this in mind and keep comparing it to specifics of each guessed species as they grow.
Im sure I better wait for proper bark or even cones to identify it but liking this ‘guess what I am’ game :slight_smile:

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