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Pinus Nigra Würstle, or Black Pine Würstle, is an interesting dwarf pine. Slow-growing and hardy, it has attractive evergreen foliage. The Pinus Nigra Black Pine conifer family is also known as the Austrian Pine. Black pines originally grew in the mountains of southern Europe as far north as Austria, and this particular variety was developed in Germany in the 1980’s. The slightly twisted glossy green needles of Pinus Nigra Würstle grow in pairs, up to 12 cm long, on upright, densely spaced branches, forming a tight round shape. The light green new growth in summer forms short tufts 2-4 cm in length at the tips of the branches, making an attractive contrast in both colour and texture with the longer, darker mature needles.
Completely hardy in the UK and in the most severe continental climates, Pinus Nigra Würstle will grow 6-10 cm a year and reach 1 metre across in 10 years, and eventually will grow to a mature height of 1.2 metres and spread of 1.5 metres in 20 years. It does not need to be pruned to maintain its natural round form; cut only to remove dead or damaged stems.
Plant Black Pine Würstle in full sun in any well-drained soil in an exposed or sheltered position. It is drought tolerant once established, needing only occasional watering and will not tolerate wet soil in winter. Protect this little shrub by tying up the branches in areas with heavy snowfall, as the branches can be damaged. Salt-tolerant, it will do well in coastal locations, and highly tolerant of pollution, it does equally well in city gardens. Unlike the native Scotch Pine, Black Pine is not susceptible to deer, so can be planted without protection in country gardens. Pinus Nigra Würstle is verticillium wilt resistant.
The small size and complete hardiness of Pinus Nigra Würstle suits it perfectly to planting in containers in exposed positions on roof terraces, where it will happily grow without much care, and in return provide year-round interest with its interesting foliage and rounded shape. Black Pine Würstle is a good choice for inclusion in a rock or gravel garden, where the texture and colour of the needles will be appreciated.