Coniferous tree growing to 100 ft (30 m). Has reddish-brown bark, pairs of fine, needle-like leaves, yellowish buds in winter, and oval to conical cones.
Habitat & Cultivation
Native to mountainous regions of Europe and north and west Asia, Scots pine is now found throughout the northern hemisphere. The leaves are gathered in summer. The stems are usually harvested when the tree is felled.
Leaves, branches, stems, seeds, essential oil.
The leaves of Scots pine contain a volatile oil (consisting mainly of alpha-pinene), resin, and bitter principles.
History & Folklore
Pine oil is added to disinfectants and other preparations. The distilled resin produces turpentine.
Medicinal Actions & Uses
Scots pine leaves, taken internally, have a mildly antiseptic effect within the chest, and may also be used for arthritic and rheumatic problems. Essential oil from the leaves respiratory infections, and for digestive disorders such as gas. Scots pine branches and stems yield a thick resin, which is also antiseptic within the respiratory tract. The seeds yield an essential oil with diuretic and respiratory-stimulant properties.
Do not use Scots pine if prone to allergic skin reactions. Do not take the essential oil internally except under professional supervision.