Encyclopedia Article


The piñón or pinyon, is a type of pine tree that is native to the American Southwest and is common in the woodlands of Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Nevada, and California. The pinyon pine is a relatively short tree that does not usually grow over 20-50 feet. It is characterized by its rounded form and branches that extend outward. The tree grows very slowly, reaching maturity around 100 years, and on average lives to be 350-450 years old. Pinyon pines produce edible pine nuts that have been a major food source for Native American peoples for centuries, and the tree's timber was used in early pueblo and cliff dwelling structures. The pinyon pine is known as the official state tree of New Mexico..

Photo Credit: 

"Pinyon Pine, Canyon Overlook trail 4-30-14zk, Zion National Park, April 30, 2014" by Don Graham is licensed under CC BY-SA.