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(Pinus contorta Douglas ex Loudon var. contorta)


(P. contorta Douglas var. latifolia Engelm.)


(P. banksiana Lamb)
P. divaricata [Ail] Dumont)


(P. flexilis James)
Apinus flexilis)


(P. albicaulis Engelm.)


(P. ponderosa ssp. ponderosa Doug. ex C. Lawson)


(P. monticola)


(P. nigra J. F. Arnold)


(P. sylvestris L.)


(P. cembra L.)



PARTS USED – needles, bark, resin, cones, buds, flowers and pollen

Amber beads that glowed as if with sunshine.


The young pine knows the secrets of the ground
The old pine knows the stars.


Pines and pines and the shadows of pines as far as the eye can see:

A steadfast legion of stalwart knights in dominant empery...

A drop of amber, from the weeping plant,

Fell unexpected, and embalm’d an ant;

The little insect we so much condemn is, from a worthless ant, become a gem.


Around thee shall glisten the loveliest Amber, that ever the

sorrowing sea bird hath wept.




Pinus is likely derived from the Latin PICNUS meaning pitch. Some authors believe it is Latin for “raft”, due to use in building boats. For this reason it is associated with Neptune, the Sea God. The Indo- European root PI, means fat, lard, gum or resin, any thick sticky substance. Pion is from Greek meaning fat.

Another possible origin is the Latin Poena related to pain and punishment, and introduced into Celtic and Germanic language with Christianity. The Old English PINIAN means to torment.

Today, to pine means to waste away, especially under pain or mental distress, to long for, to repine, to grieve for, suffer, want and starvation.

A related word is pineal, the small cone-shaped gland that secretes serotonin, melatonin, and DMT. The gland was first reported by Galen. Pinocchio, for “naughty little pine”, or “pine seed” is the famous wooden puppet whose nose grew larger with lies.

Banksiana is named after Sir Joseph Banks, who sailed with Captain Cook to the Pacific in 1768. He later visited Newfoundland, where he found Jack Pine. Contorta means contorted or twisted, while ponderosa means “full of weight”, or heavy.

Other Greek and Roman Gods, including Bacchus claimed the pine, devotees decorating themselves with pine boughs and flavouring their wine with pine-cones. Retsina, the Greek wine, possesses this piney resinous taste.

Of the 90 pine species in the northern Hemisphere, five are native to Alberta. Lodgepole is the most widely distributed pine in North America, and on exceeded worldwide by the Scots Pine.

In classical Mythology, the fertility God Attis castrated himself under a pine. This was the result of rejection in love; and his spirit passed into the tree.

Pine was associated with Phrygian Attis, son of Isis or Cybele, who was the Great Mother Goddess of Anatolia. Her forbidden lust for her son drove Attis insane, and he castrated himself under a pine. In another version Attis is a shepherd, and his mother changed him into a pine to punish his breaking a vow to be eternally faithful to only her. Of course, he broke the vow and married the daughter of the river god Sangarius, and thus was put to death by Cybele and turned into a pine.

The cult of Cybele was first limited to Phrygia, but went on to Crete and introduced to Rome in 3rd century BC. Every year at spring equinox, highly licentious ritual feasts were held, and the sacred pine was brought into the Palatine temple, covered with blood and bandages to bring plants back to life. Known as Black Friday, or Day of the Blood, his image was bound to a pine and carried to the temple. Initiates castrated themselves in imitation. He was buried and on the third day arose from the dead. Sound familiar?

Attis was a God without a father, a virgin’s son. He was conceived on March 25th, and born on December 25th, so that the time of his death was the time of his conception, or re-conception.

The Chinese, on the other hand, plant pines on graves, believing vital force will keep the body from decay and strengthen the spirit of the departed. It is an emblem of constancy in adversity.

The Japanese consider pine a symbol of life force, omen of good fortune, courage and resolution. It is the tree of the Shinto New Year.

Two pines symbolize love and faithfulness in marriage.

In the Jewish faith, coffins are often made of pine. In Japan, a pine branch over the door has come to symbolize joy, while in German tradition, the holes and knots mark where wood spirits would escape.

Pine cones were considered fertility charms, and it was said that if one pine seed was eaten from cones collected on midsummer, it make one immune to harm.

In ancient Greece, the pinecone symbolized male genitalia, and alternated with the female lotus on urns, tombs, pillars, and later, Renaissance cathedral towers. The “pineapples” on four-poster beds are stylized pinecones, related to various goddesses of fertility.

The pineal gland is so named for its resemblance in shape to the cone.

The pineal gland produces DMT, or N-dimethyl-tryptamine, the only endogenous chemical from our bodies that has psychoactive properties. It produces psychedelic amounts of DMT at extraordinary times in our lives, including falling in love, birth, death and orgasm. It produces large amounts in moments of stress and can cause psychosis in some people. Some people call it the “spirit molecule”.

Carrying a pinecone is said to impart vigor to the elderly. In the language of flowers, pine stands for pity, either as compassion or matter of regret.

Pine pollen has been used traditionally in money spells due to its gold color.

Hildegard von Bingen wrote pine, “is a symbol of strength. Ghosts hate pine trees and avoid places where they grow.”

The shape of the tree resembles praying hands, searching for truth. Certainly various native tribes, including the Iroquois, found that the pine symbolized a balanced life existence. Europeans regarded pine branches as a symbol of aspiration; and gave it a birth date of November 26th. The sixth Norse Rune, Ken is associated with a fiery chip of resinous wood such as pine. No less than eight Scottish clans have pine on their clan badge.

One myth, amongst the Southern Kwakiutl Natives, described how young people would stick lodge pole pine pitch onto hemlock twigs, to traps hummingbirds. Their hearts were considered a potent love charm.

The Chipewyan call Jack Pine, GANI, while some Cree call it OSKAHTAK and Lodgepole Pine is named OSKAHCAKOSAK. Oskayi means new. Another Cree name, according to native healer, Russell Willier, is ASKATIKOS.

They traditionally made a strong thread from the fibrous roots called WATAPE.This was used to sew together sheets of birch bark for canoes or cooking vessels.

Jack Pine roots can be 50-60 feet long, with a consistent circumference. These were split, coil wrapped, and placed in the water to more easily remove the bark.

The long pine needles came in handy for sewing jobs that didn’t require as much strength, or to make small baskets.

Jack Pine cones were boiled by Potawatomi, living in region now known, as Michigan or Wisconsin. The liquid resin was removed from the surface for ointments. They call it pitchy pine or BEGI’WIC CINGWAK.

The Cree melted the pitch to fumigate sickrooms.

J. David Henry, in his excellent book, Canada’s Boreal Forest writes, “Jack pine cones even look unique. As hard as a piece of iron ore, with a surface reminiscent of a hand grenade, they consist of hard segments bonded tightly by a strong resinous glue...the resinous glue seals off the compartments, protecting the seeds from rain, frost, bacterial and fungal infections, and even the gnawing teeth of most rodents...Jack pine cones do not explode when exposed to flame; rather they bloom like a flower filmed in time lapse photography.”

Fire is necessary to release the seeds with the glue beginning to melt at 50 degrees Celsius. Cones exposed to 700 degrees C for three minutes show no loss of seed viability.

Lodgepole produces serotinuous and non-serotinous cones, the latter not requiring a hot fire to scatter seeds. A general rule is that you will find the highest seed production in serotinous cones of higher elevation trees.

Jack pine needles were crushed to powder by the Ojibwa for dusting burns, cuts, sores and frostbite. They decocted the bark, along with pussy willow, white pine, red oak and bearberry leaves to alleviate fainting fits.

Some native tribes believed evil spirits lived in jack pine, causing infertility in women and animals.

The seeds from the White Bark Pine and Limber Pine, as well as the introduced Swiss Stone Pine are large enough to eat, although most pine nuts are edible.

A recent introduction to the markets of inedible P. armandii pine nuts from China has left a metallic taste in the mouths of some consumers. Literally.

Pine seeds contain up to 50% of a fixed oil (see below), 30% starch, 5-10% sugars, 10-15% protein, minerals, and traces of essential oils.

Native tribes of British Columbia would harvest the cones and dry them slightly, then pound them with rocks to dislodge the seeds. The southern Okanogan tribes roasted the cones in pits overnight, and then easily removed the seeds.

Or, they simply looked for caches of squirrels, and robbed them. The Navaho and Pueblo natives have over 50 ways to use pine nuts, with P. edulis covering millions of acres of land in the southwestern United States.

In Bohemia, thieves would eat pine nuts, believing the seeds made them shot-proof.

The Blackfoot used lodgepole pitch as a chewing gum or to kill the pain of dental caries. It was burned as incense to kill the germs in a sick room, and to send negative energy back to its source. The pitch was boiled with buffalo phallus and used as glue for ceremonial feather headdress and bows by Blackfoot and Blood tribes. It was applied to moccasins for waterproofing.

The long, thin lodge poles were highly prized for tipi, hence the common name, as well as travois for journeys.

Various tribes including Chippewa boiled and drank needle tea for bronchial problems. The inner bark was decocted for gonorrhea, diarrhea, and various stomach complaints.

The Chipewyan powdered the punky, dried crumbly wood of jack pine, GANE, for baby powder. The early shoots are sweet and make a tasty spring treat, either singly or cooked in molasses as a spring tonic.

The cambium was traditionally scraped from all pine bark, including jack and lodgepole, for food.

After the bark is removed, the thick, juicy cambium is removed in long, fleshy ribbons. Scrapers were made from antlers or ulna of deer, or the shoulder blade of a black bear.

A good time to collect the juicy cambium is late May or early June, when the pollen is ripe and flies off the trees in clouds. It is believed best, when collected in morning and eaten while sweet, and tender.

Left for even a day, the noodles turn sour and discolor. Collected in the morning, the sap is milky and easily handled, but after warming by the sun becomes sticky and syrupy.

After this short window of edibility, the inner bark was used strictly for medicine.

Linda Kershaw, in her excellent book, Edible and Medicinal Plants of the Rockies, says pine sap was heated until black and mixed four parts to one part bone marrow, as a salve for burns.

In areas scorched by earlier fires, there are often standing, old lodgepole monuments. High levels of oleoresins (turpentines) have moved to the roots, allowing the old structures to stand. This root wood is known as candlewood, and burns for hours as a torch. The red, dead needles of pine are as flammable as birch bark and waterproof, making a good fire starter.

In Alberta, limber pine is restricted to areas around the Crows Nest Pass, where the long-lived and stark, windswept trees grow. The Burmis tree is a 300 year-old specimen that died in 1978, due in part to over-fertilization by children as part of a school classroom project. Although deceased, the tree has been propped up with steel rods due to its landmark nature.

An ancient Limber Pine, over a millenium in age, is found west of Nordegg near the edge of Kootenay Plains Ecological Reserve. Due to poor soil it grows very slowly. Another, found in Kananaskis country was a young seedling in 1586 AD.

White Bark Pine is a timberline species, and slow grower like limber pine, taking 200 years to mature.

Western White Pine is restricted to the northern Rockies, and is rarer yet in southwestern Alberta. Natives of the region boiled the bark for both stomach and lung disorders, including tuberculosis.

It seasons well without warping and does not split from nails. It is often the choice for cabinetwork as well as window and door frames; not to mention wooden matches.

One living specimen in Oregon tops 239 feet, with a nearly seven foot diameter. It is the official state tree of Idaho.

Yellow or Ponderosa Pine is found throughout the interior of British Columbia, and south to New Mexico. It is official state tree of Montana.

The pine pitch, or boiled needles, were used by natives for loose stools caused by eating strange foods. Eating one pine needle was said to cure heartburn.

The young, un-opened male pinecones were boiled and eaten in famine. The seeds of the larger female cones are edible and oil rich.

Like other pines, the inner cambium is scraped off and eaten, and said to taste like sheep fat. The bark, in hot sunshine, smells like caramel, or vanilla, while the needles are quite citrusy, at least when young.

Various tribes, including the Flathead of Montana, mixed the pine pitch with animal fat as a poultice spread on buckskin for rheumatism and backache.

To remove afterbirth, they would place heated needles on the abdomen of the new mother.

This may sound unusual until you consider that pine needles contain iso-cupressic acid, that causes abortion in cattle due to uterine- stimulating activity.

In fact, iso-cupressic acid, whose acetyl and succinyl derivatives and other metabolites including tetra-hydro-agathic acid are believed responsible. Listeria monocytogeneshas been identified on pine needles, and is well-known pathogen and cause of abortion.

The pitch was used for bone or wooden whistles and flutes, by closing one of the hollow ends. Other tribes used the gum resin as torch, glue for arrow-making and of course, chewing gum. The Cheyenne used the roots to produce a blue dye, while the Paiute smeared the resin on rock pictures to protect them from the elements.

The young male cones before pollen formed were chewed and the juice sucked out.

The bark scales burn easily, cool quickly, and produce no smoke; a real asset when you are hiding in the bush.

Pinidine is an alkaloid not present in dormant seeds, but increases up to 28 days after germination.

Mistletoe (Arceuthobium americanum) occasionally grows as a parasite on lodgepole pine. Mistletoe comes from the Old English MISTLETAN meaning “different twig”. Some believe it comes from the German MIST meaning dung, in reference to deposit of seeds from berries, by bird droppings.

It derives mostly water from the host plant, since it has its own chlorophyll.

Both French and English women in northern Maine used spruce infected with Arceuthobium in their hair at mid-winter dances.

Young women of the Okanagan in central British Columbia boiled the branches infected with the related A. douglasii, for wash they believed gave them long, thick hair. Other tribes in British Columbia prepared decoctions of A. americanum to treat stomachache, hemorrhage of the lungs and mouth, tuberculosis, coughs, colds and rheumatism.

In Mexico, species of Arceuthobium were used for lung problems, coughs, and nervous disorders. It was burned as incense in religious ceremonies.

Pine needles can be used for fibre. In the late 19th century, when jute became expensive, over 1 million yards of bagging was manufactured from pine needle fibre. The fibre has been used in upholstery; and the needles were chopped for bedding for horses and cattle. Pine needle mulch is excellent for strawberries, increasing both stem hardiness and fruit yields. Pine boughs are an ideal cover for protection of peonies during the winter.

Pine needle powder is supplemental forage for fowl and livestock in China. A 5% addition for hens increases egg production by 13%. When 2.5-4.5% pine needle powder is added to pig forage, the growth rate increases by 15-30% and percentage of lean meat increases. When added at 10% rate to dairy cow forage, output of milk increases by 7.4%. There are 60 pine needle powder factories in China with annual output of 15,000 tons. Pine needle ointment is also produced.

Thomas Nelson, an environmental psychologist at the U of Alberta has developed treated pine bark chips for use on un-shoveled walks. Environmentally friendly, the chips smell nice, and instead of sand and gravel that sinks, the wood product floats on the top. When heated by sun, the chips imbed into surface, creating good traction. In spring, the chips can be swept up as mulch.

Alberta produces about 3.8 million tonnes of wood waste annually. A new web site helps connect users of bark, sawdust, shavings, etc for added use, other than simply incineration. The page is

And of course, many people use pine chips as garden mulch, but with a caution. Pine can be the origin of a very painful disease called Sporotrichosis, an ulcerating skin infection.

Symptoms include swollen reddish patches of skin, large blisters, and later oozing, open sores. It usually starts on the hands, wrists, or arms and is localized until it spreads over the body like wildfire.

The cause is a soil fungus that infects pine bark, especially mulch. It is a known hazard to lumberjacks, gardeners, florists and landscape workers, beginning in a puncture wound. So always wear high canvas or leather gloves when working with pine chips and mulch.

Recent studies from Sweden show lodgepole pine has a close relationship with algae and allows these plants to synthesize chlorophyll in the dark.

The Jack Pine was the official tree of the Northwest Territories until replace by Tamarack in 1999. Lodgepole Pine is Alberta’s provincial tree. Ontario has chosen White Pine as the provincial tree, Montana picked the majestic Ponderosa and Idaho chose Western White Pine. It is interesting that these five pines have been chosen, probably, in part, for their economic importance in the past. The Pine Cone and Tassel is the official flower of Maine. Scotch Pine is introduced. Two beautiful trees planted in Grande Prairie in 1948 are now over 15 metres tall.

Pine resin has been gathered and burned as incense to strengthen the nerves and give energy and emotional strength. It was frequently burned in sick rooms to support and cleanse.

Fossilized pine resin is known as amber, and is valued for jewelry. It ranges from milky yellow to a dark transparent golden brown. The Latin word for amber, ELECTRUM, is the root of electricity, due to amber’s well-known ability to develop static charge. The Greek word ELEKTON meaning sun’s glare, is origin of word electrons in physics.

It was known as LYNCURIUS or lynx stone, stemming from the widespread belief it was solidified urine of the wild cat. The Celtic Sun God AMBRES derives his name from the fossilized resin. The Athenian general Nicias said it was juice from the rays of the sun. This “unctuous sweat” would run down to the sea and solidify in salt water. The Romans believed this and called it amber succinum, meaning sap stone.

Another roman tale is that amber is melted honey that congealed when it was dripped into the sea by bees.

The Chinese call it HU-P’O meaning “soul of the tiger”, another wild cat. One Chinese myth suggested in the cliffs of Ning Chou dwelled thousands of bees, and when they crumble, the bees come out; people burn them and make into amber.

Aristotle thought it was petrified poplar gum, and Hippocrates suggested it as a medicine for the stomach.

Amber nodules are often associated with coal deposits, but also are found in shale and sandstone along the Peace River.

Pliny believed amber to cure fever, blindness, and deafness. In Baltic regions, the amber beads were the tears of Freya and a remedy for arthritis. This is still a major source of amber.

Freya wears a necklace called Brisingamen that shines as bright and golden as the sun. She received the necklace in exchange for wedding for just one day and night each of the four dwarves that carved it. Her husband Odur found out and left in a rage. As penance, she is ordered to spend eternity, searching the world for the husband she as shamed.

She weeps as she wander, her tears turn to gold, then amber and are washed into the sea.

The Greek legend of Phaeton says that the tears of his sisters, grieving at his death, turned into amber beads. Another is that Apollo wept tears of amber when he was banished from Olympus. Amber was previously associated with fertility and protection from the evil eye. It was carved into Paternoster beads for the Christian tradition and Mohammedan prayer beads known as Tasbih. Muslims used amber bracelets to treat or prevent jaundice. The concept of a talisman was extended to amber mouthpieces for cigars, cigarettes and hookahs, due to its perceived antiseptic properties.

Amber has been found in caves in England dating to 11000 BC. Amber trade routes from 700-400 BC suggest it was one of the most prized commodities from Northern Europe.

The Amber Room in Ekaterininsky Palace in St. Petersburg was carved entirely from panels of the petrified resin. It was said to be “like stepping into a fairy tale”. During the Second World War they were removed, but today the walls are being restored to their former glory.

Camillus Leonardus wrote in Speculum Lapidum: “Amber naturally restrains the flux of the belly, is an efficacious remedy for all disorders of the throat. It is good against poison. If laid on the breast of a wife when she is asleep, it makes her confess all her evil deeds. If fastens teeth that are loosened, and by smoke of it poisonous insects are driven away.”

Martin Luther carried a lump of amber in his pocket to prevent kidney stones. It was believed that if a man kept a piece of amber on him, he would never be betrayed by sexual impotence.

It is said that allergic reactions to cat hair are eased by wearing an amber necklace.

The Inuit of northern Canada wear amber to bring good luck in hunting. Fishermen and hunters in Tibet do likewise.

The Scotch, Austrian and Swiss Stone Pine are beautiful cultivars hardy to the prairie region. All have outstanding qualities for the urban landscape, especially in their mature form. Some older beautiful specimens can be found at the Beaverlodge Research Station.

The mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae) lives under the bark of the Lodgepole, Ponderosa and Western White Pine. Some 4.2 million hectares are infested in British Columbia with growth rate of 40%, a serious problem indeed.

Seven consecutive warm winters has reduced the usual 80% mortality rate to 10%. The present forest management strategy is to cut or burn everything in their path. Very sad, but a stark reminder of the failure of monoculture in forestry.

Too quickly overlooked, perhaps, is the use of pheromone controls.

The females are attracted by pine emissions and release exobrevicomin, a product synthesized by the beetle, and mycrene from the tree resin. These chemicals lure males, who upon arrival, release frontalin which attracts more males and females to the tree. As competition becomes too intense, resident males begin producing verbenone, which dissuades new males from landing. The latter chemical is found in plant essential oils, or can be manufactured synthetically.

Ponderosa Pine trees attacked by pine beetle all show low levels of 4-allylanisole. Emerick et al, Environ Entomol 2008 37:4.

One unusual experiment drives pine beetles to self-destructive behaviour, including cannabilism.

A piezoelectric transducer from a Hallmark greeting card recorded beetles singing. This was played back to them in the reverse order, causing more destruction than anything else tried so far.

It would be like playing a Beatles record backwards and hearing “Paul is dead”.



CONSTITUENTS P. banksiana- quinic and shikimic acids make up over 60% of the organic content of the needles. See below for essential oil. The tree also contains agathadiol (diterpenoid) 18 & 19-norabieta-8, 11, 13-trien-4-ol (nor- diterpenoids); and various triterpenoids like serrat-14-ene-3 alpha,21 beta and alpha diol. Diterpenes agathadiol, isoagatholal, 13-epitorulosol, manoyl oxide, and (+)-13-epimanoyl oxide.

P. contorta- needles- acetocy-dihydrocoumaryl alcohol, chavicol, benzoic acid, a dilignol rhamnoside, rehosmin glucoside, zingerone glucoside; ascorbic acid.

bark- pimaral, isopimaral, pimaradiene, pimarol, isopimarol, gamma-cadinene, oplopanone, methyl ethers, 6-C-methyl kaempferol.
Also contains benzoic, chavicol, zingerone and rheosmin beta-D- glucopyranosides; and various diterpenoids like agathadiol, agatholal, (+)-epi- manool, 18-norlabda-8(17), 13-diene-4alpha,15-diol, and epi torulosol. cambium- dried- 1.1% reducing sugar, 2.1% non-reducing sugar, 23.7% hemicellulose, 2.4% protein, 2.3% ash.

knotwood- flavonoids, stilbenes, pinocembrin, lignans, pinosylvin mono-methyl ether, pinosylvin, oligomers, liovil, and nortrachelogenin.
P. sylvestris- superoxide dimutase, various diterpenes such as pimaradiene, isopimaradiene, pimaral, isopimaril, dehydroabietal, pimarol, isopimarol and abienol.

pine cone- procyandins andphenolic acids
P. nigra cone- phenylpropanoids
Pollen- androsterone 2 mcg, androstenedione 75 mcg, testosterone 7 mcg, and dehydroepiandrosterone 1 mcg/ 100 grams; as well as brassinolide, arginine, various vitamins, alanine, amino butyric acid, and various amino acids.
P. flexilis- hirsutenone, oregonin, hirsutanonol, and two diarylhepatanoids. mistletoe- viscin, various polysaccarides, uronic acid, protein, xylose, arabinose, glycine, histidine.
P. ponderosa- various monoterpenoids: 3-carene, limonene, myrcene, and alpha and beta pinene.
seedlings- several novel piperidine alkaloids.
P. monticola- three 19-norabieatetraenes
needles- isocupressic acid.
Fossilized pine resin- succoxyabietic/ succinoabietinolic/ succinosilvic/
succinic acids; succinoabietol, succinore-sinol, benzine, resin.

Young pine needles make a very pleasant, and yet, strong tasting tea with mild diuretic and expectorant action. The vitamin C content is five times that of lemons, also contributing benefit.

Pairs of fresh pine needles are used to garnish food or act as delicate skewers for grilling food in various Asian countries. In Japan, a delicate soup brewed in a teapot has pine needles stuffed into the spout to impart a subtle flavour, upon pouring into bowls.

The compound D-pinitol has been found in water-stressed pine needles, and leaves of legumes. In the body, pinitol is converted to D-chiro-inositol, which influences several metabolic processes including blood sugar control.

D-pinitol increased the effectiveness of insulin when in low amounts, but had no effect in high insulin environment. Sarah Bates et al, British J of Pharm 2000 130.

Pinitol increases glycogen synthesis in muscle cells, particularly in the absence of insulin, suggesting use in sports nutrition.

Pinitol has been found to reduce lipid accumulation and expression of some cytokines and macrophage scavenger expression via insulin- like activity. Choi et al, J Med Food 2007 10:4.

D-pinitol was given to patients with type 2 diabetes in a double-blind study, at a dose of 600 mg twice daily for three months.

Mean fasting blood glucose concentration reduced by 19.2% compared to small changes in placebo group. Kim et al, Eur J Clin Nutr 2005 59:3.

A shorter, double-blind study at a dose of 20 mg per kilogram of body weight daily for four weeks, decreased mean fasting plasma glucose by 5.3%. Davis et al, Diabetes Care 2000 23:7.

D-pinitol reduced hyper-lipidemia in STZ type 2 diabetic rats. Geethan et al, J Biochem Mol Toxicol 2008 22:4.

Pine needles exhibit strong anti-oxidant, anti-mutagenic, anti- proliferative and anti-tumor activity. Kwak et al, Nutr Cancer 56:2. Water extracts show DNA protection common to cancer chemo- preventative agents. Jeong et al, Food Chem Toxicol 2009 47:8.

Needles from white pine (P. glauca) protect PC cells from gluco- toxicity and glucose deprivation based on in vitro work by Harris et al, Pharm Bio 2008 46:1-2.

The needles of P. sylvestris have been found to exhibit significant cytotoxic effect on Hela and A549 cancer cell lines. Zhonguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi 2006 31:23.

Work in Finland 2004 found bark extracts reduce cellular inflammation linked to arthritis pain by inhibiting production of nitric oxide and prostaglandins. Other studies suggest extracts have potential to treat or relieve hypertension, asthma, heart disease and cancer.

The inner bark is somewhat stronger as a decoction, and is best used after initial fever, and infectious stage of a chest cold, is passed.

The pine seeds are nutritious, moisten the lungs and lubricate the intestines in chronic constipation. For sore and bleeding hemorrhoids, the seeds may be eaten several times daily. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, pine seeds are used for general debility due to Chi deficiency, and conditions like rheumatoid arthritis made worse by cold and wind.

Jack pine seed cones have been found to be a rich source of the proanthocyanidins (condensed tannins), mentioned below.

Pine cone extracts decrease platelet aggregation, and possess vaso- relaxant activity, angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibition, and ability to enhance microcirculation by increasing capillary permeability.

A mouse study by Mihara et al, Anticancer Res 2002 22:3 found pinecone extracts possess both anti-bacterial and anti-tumour properties.

The cones of Jack Pine display strong antioxidant activity. Fraser et al, Can J Physiol Pharmacol 2007 85.

The cones of Scotch Pine are extracted in pure water and yield an extract, Proligna® with immune supporting compounds. It is produced from pinecones harvested in Wisconsin.

In a study by Bradley et al, Int Immunopharm 2003 3:209, Proligna increased human peripheral blood mononuclear cell proliferation by 9 fold in 9 days. It encourages the maturation of immature dendritic cells, which in turn, stimulate killer T-cells.

Another study by Jaroseski et al 2006 combined electro- chemotherapy with pinecone extract. Animals receiving both had complete absence of tumors 50-64% after just fifty days. Those receiving ECT had a 31% response.

Decoctions of Scotch pine seeds are used for treating bronchitis, tuberculosis, bladder infections and excessive vaginal discharge.

Austrian Pine cones have been found to contain a phenylpropanoid component with anti-HIV-1 activity. Planta Medica 1996 62:1. Other work by Dr. Konna at Showa University has identified a Japanese white pine cone extract, KS-7 that shows similar activity against HIV in lymph cells.

Pinolenic acid, extracted from the seeds of P. koraiensis, stimulates the release of cholecystokinin, a hormone that suppresses hunger and helps the body digest fats.

PinnoThin, a new appetite suppressant is now available from Lipid Nutrition, a division of Loders Croklaan.

The ripe seeds can be burnt to charcoal and crushed into a powder for dusting burns and sores. Pine nut charcoal was, in fact, a primary wound antiseptic before the advent of penicillin, sulfa and other wonder drugs.

Pine cones, from related P. densiflora, show activity against acne- related bacteria. Sultan et al, Planta Med 2008 74.

Pine nuts, like the pollen, contain testosterone as well as estrone and estradiol. Gutierrez-Fernandez et al, An R Acad Farm 1981 47:1.

Pine nuts contain monosaturated fats, magnesium, potassium and arginine, all powerful compounds for counteracting heart disease.

The condition pine nut syndrome or metallogeusia baffled scientists for years. About two days after ingestion of a P. armandii pine nut, everything one eats tastes bitter and the tongue tastes like tin foil. Buying pine nuts from China is a taste risk.

The resin, or pitch has very specific action. A raisin-sized piece is chewed and swallowed for softening bronchial mucous and easing expectoration. Some herbalists say the oozing pitch represents the rising phlegm or mucous that the lungs wish to eliminate. This resin can be chewed and applied to a sore throat or on a cloth for stitching pain in the lungs.

Many familiar commercial cough syrups make use of this quality. The inner bark is combined with balsam poplar buds, seneca root and dry chokecherry bark to make a high quality cough syrup; good for acute and chronic conditions.

The fresh resin can be applied directly to scrapes, cuts, skin rashes, swellings, sprains and open sores for antiseptic effect. The resin will temporarily deaden toothache pain, filling cavities in decayed teeth.

Proanthocyanin polymers from pitch or resin of various pines possess potent anti-fungal activity.

A white powder, derived pine resin, has been found effective against ulcers, heartburn, reflux esophagitis and other digestive disorders.

Researchers at U of Newcastle found Ecabet Sodium, a white powder produced from pine resin, reduces pepsin activity by up to 78%, and caused the mucous lining of stomach to thicken. It is a natural antiseptic, reducing the survival time of ulcer causing bacteria in the stomach. Pearson et al, Clin Sci (London) 2001 100:4 411-7.

Pine supports fatigue, coldness and sexual exhaustion in the whole body. This is partially due to adrenal gland support, which in turn assists the bronchial health and asthmatic complaints. See essential oils.

The pollen powder is used for chafed skin and other irritated skin problems.

In China, pine pollen (SONG HUA FEN) is given medicinally as a blood cell stimulant and general restorative to heart and lungs. It makes sense, as the pollen is very edible and almost pure protein. Like any pollen, there may be individuals that suffer allergies.

Pine pollen is considered, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, to increase energy and circulation, useful for dizziness and puffiness of the face. Externally, the pollen is applied to boils and draining sores.

Uncooked pine pollen does not digest, but cooking it releases the protein and oils. Crushing it also releases the nutrients.

Pine pollen is one of eight plant pollens found in Cernilton, an older European formulation for prostate health.

Androstenedione is a hormone naturally produced by the adrenal glands; and commonly found in the pollen of various pines. It is a precursor to testosterone that is more direct then DHEA, and therefore worthy of further research. High value steroid products such as progesterone, estrogenic hormones and corticosteroids can be easily made from this precursor as well.

Pine pollen is anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory and down regulates JNK and MMPs. Lee et al, Phytother Res 23:1.

Recent work by same author and journal Jan 15 2009 appears to confirm benefit in chronic arthritis, reducing LDL and increasing HDL cholesterol levels.

Pine pollen of P. mugo, an introduced ornamental on the prairies, contains two jasmonates. These compounds exert different physiological effects when exogenously applied to plants. They are believed to be involved in stress signals, expressing or activating specific response genes.

The pollen of related P. densiflora has been studied by Mi Choi et al, Phyto Res 21:5 and found to possess anti-inflammatory and analgesic activity similar to indomethacin. Recent work by Lee et al, Phytother Res 2009 23:5 suggests use for chronic inflammation of arthritis.

Various pine needle extract baths are widely used throughout continental Europe for nervousness, neuralgias, rheumatism and kidney weakness. They stimulate metabolism and circulation, as shown by decreases in uric acid and increase of urea.

The extracts are about 1.5% essential oil of pine needle, along with aqueous extracts of bark, and rich in tannins; or an extraction of the water-soluble constituents from the spent needles. This is then thickened, under vacuum to yield a syrupy consistency. Pine needle baths are 15-16% tannins, the bark up to 28%. Bath temperature should be in the 36-38 Celsius range for up to twenty minutes, followed by at least one hour of rest.

Work in Japan has shown pine needles contain gallic acids that appear useful in decreasing triglyceride levels.

The Chinese believe that wood shaving decoctions, or tinctures from various knotty pines give relief to various arthritic and rheumatic conditions. P. contorta would certainly fit into this category; at least linguistically.

Willför et al, J Ag Food Chem 2003 51:26 found knot wood from eleven of thirteen trees possess higher anti-oxidative potency than the synthetic BHA.

Lodgepole pine extract is a greater scavenger of peroxyl radicals than Trolox in anti-oxidative activity, suggesting TCM knew something all along about this plant material. The knot wood has a trapping capacity of 47 mmol/g, compared to Trolox at 8.0, nearly eight times more powerful.

Balsam fir tested 9.6, Douglas fir is 12, White spruce 4.8, P. cembra 4.2, Thuja occidentalis 2.4, and European larch 6.4.

Knot wood is plentiful in lumber mills and pulp operations, and the extraction methods are simple.

Recent work by Phelan et al, J Med Food 2009 12:6 found knot wood of Jack Pine high in anti-oxidant activity and suppressed IL-2 production.

The extracts could be tested for functional foods, pharmaceuticals, natural biocides, and wood preservatives.

The Cayuga people used knot wood in the treatment of tuberculosis, due in part to presence of the antibiotic pinosylvin. The knot wood water (1:32) was boiled down to half and four ounces was given three times daily after meals.

Pine knot salves were applied to insect bites and poison ivy, by Seneca and other aboriginal peoples. It was used in treatment of andropausal males with skin cracking of penis, the salve a mixture of pine knot, wild sarsaparilla, tallow and beeswax.

Expressed juice from P. contorta has been shown to be active against gram-positive bacteria and mycobacterium. Methanol extracts show activity against Bacillus subtilis, E. coli, Mycobacterium phlei, Pseudomonas aeruginosa H18, Salmonella typhimurium, and methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in work by McCutcheon et al, at the University of British Columbia.

Fresh extracts of lodgepole pine show activity against Candida albicans. Ritch-Krc et al, Journal of Ethnopharm 1996 52.

Needles, bark and pitch contain alpha-pinene and limonone, which are active against influenza A and B.

Ponderosa Pine was juiced and shows activity against various gram- negative, gram- positive and mycobacterium species.

Research at the University of Bordeaux, France has led to a special pine bark extraction. This product, trademarked pycnogenol is fifty times more powerful an anti-oxidant than vitamin E and twenty times more powerful than vitamin C.

It is derived from a class of bioflavonoids called proanthocyanidins- the most efficient free radial scavengers yet found in the plant kingdom. Free radicals, of course, damage human cells leading to ageing in diseases like arthritis, diabetes and arteriosclerosis.

The extracts have been shown to inhibit the enzymes that cause inflammation; reduce histamine action and help the arteries resist attack by mutagens. Its anti-coagulant activity is rated at 5 times that of aspirin, in preventing platelet clumping.

A double-blind, placebo-controlled study in China involved 58 patients with hypertension given 100 mg daily of pycnogenol for three months. The dosage of medication was reduced, and the endothelin-1 concentration was increased.

In one study of 100 individuals with varicose veins that received 15 mg daily of pine extract, over 80% showed clear clinical improvement.

Studies indicate pine bark shows marked benefit in diabetic retinopathy. Kim et al, Carbo Research 2004 339:3.

Petrassi et al, Phytomedicine 2000 7:5 reported on a double-blind study of forty patients suffering chronic venous insufficiency. The pine extract significantly improved leg heaviness, subcutaneous edema, reduced venous pressure, capillary leakage, etc. Its safety was also noted, in that there were no changes in blood biochemistry or hematology parameters.

Work by Koch et al, Phytother Res 16-S1 compared pycnogenol and venostatin, from Horse Chestnut seed in the treatment of chronic venous insufficiency and found the pine extract superior. I find they work well together, almost synergistically.

Researchers looked at pycnogenol for protection against superficial and deep vein thrombosis associated with prolonged air travel.

The double-blind, placebo-controlled study reported in Clin App Thromb/Hemostasis 2004 10:4 looked at 198 subjected taking 200 mg, 2-3 hours before flying, the same six hours later, and 100 mg after the flight. Compared to placebo, the pink bark extract was effective at protecting from thrombotic events.

Work by Putter et al, Thromb Res 1999 95 found pine extract inhibits platelet aggregation associated with smoking as effectively as aspirin, but with increasing bleeding time.

A new clinical diabetes study by Lu et al found pycnogenol lowers blood sugar levels in mild cases of type 2 patients. Diabetes Care, published by the Am Diab Assoc, released results of their open, controlled-dose finding in 2004 27. Significant lowering of blood glucose levels was found with supplementation in the 50-200 mg range.

A newer study by Hogger et al, Diabetes Res Clin Practice Feb 2007 conducted at the University of Wurzburg, Germany investigated the interaction of pycnogenol with the enzyme alpha-glucosidase, which breaks down carbohydrates in meals. The extract was shown to be 190 times more potent at inhibiting this enzyme than the synthetic inhibitor acarbose (Precose) a common prescription drug for treatment of type 11 diabetes.

Korean researchers have found pine bark extract suppresses postprandial hyperglycemia of diabetic patients and may help control obesity by decreasing the food efficiency ratio. Kim et al, Nutrition 2005 21:6.

Dr. Gianni Belcaro, Chieti-Pescara University in Italy looked at diabetic micro-angiopathy (DM), a condition that affects vision, kidney problems and ischemic tissue necrosis resulting in leg ulcers and possible amputation. His study in Angiology September 2006, found pycnogenol significantly reduced DM in a study involving 60 diabetic patients. Capillary blood flow was 34% compared to 4.7% in placebo group, and ankle swelling related to leakage was reduced 17% compared to placebo at 2.6%. This is after only four weeks at 150 mg daily.

Another study in Clinical and Applied Thrombosis/Hemostasis October 2006, found reduced edema in hypertensive patients. Fifty- three patients received placebo or 150 mg of pycnogenol daily for 8 weeks.

All were being treated for high blood pressure with ACE inhibitors or calcium channel blockers, and both showed a 35-36% decrease in ankle swelling.

One researcher in Oklahoma found pycnogenol more effective than Ritalin at treating ADD, attention deficit disorder and ADHD. The clinical trial only numbered 30 humans, but it is well worth a follow up.

Dvoráková et al, Nutr Neurosci 2007 10:34 found pycnogenol decreased noradrenaline, adrenaline, and dopamine levels; and normalized catecholamine concentrations, suggesting added benefit in ADHD.

Work by Kohama et al, Eur Bull Drug Res 1999 found pycnogenol reduced pain from endometriosis in 80% of patients. More recent work by same author in Journal of Reproductive Health 2006 3:7 found pine bark extracts reduced symptoms by 33%. The study involved 58 women aged 21-38 who had undergone operations within six months prior to study. The following year, in same journal 2007 52:8, the author compared pycnogenol at 60 mg daily for 48 weeks against a gonadotropin releasing hormone agonist and found similar results.

The group on pharmaceuticals began to exhibit a recurrence of symptoms soon after treatment ended.

Work by Yang et al, Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand 2007 86:8 found 200 mg doses given to 155 peri-menopausal women in a double blind, placebo control study resulted in fewer hot flashes as well as improved LDL/HDL ratio.

Liu et al, Bio Pharm Bulletin 2000 23:6 found pycnogenol useful for prevention and/or treatment of vascular or neurodegenerative diseases associated with beta amyloid toxicity, including senile plaques of the brain, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Work by Rihn et al, Phytotherapy Research 2001 15:1 reported pine bark extracts down regulate calgranulin A and B, related to psoriasis.

Pine bark has been found effective in treating cryptosporidiosis that is caused by a tiny parasite found more and more frequently in drinking water.

Work by Matsumori et al, J Card Fail 2007 13:9 found pine bark extract useful in viral myocarditis. It reduced viral replication and suppressed pro-inflammatory cytokines.

Another randomized, DB, PC study by Belcaro et al, Phytother Res 2008 22:4 on 156 patients found the control group joint mobility and foot and ankle swelling decreased by 1%, whereas the pycnogenol group of patients showed a 79% improvement.

A meta-analysis in Germany reviewed five clinical trials involving nearly 1300 patients using pycnogenol for treatment and prevention of retinopathy. The study showed the herb prevented progression of the disease, partially recovered visual acuity, improved capillary resistance and reduced leakage into retina.

Pycnogenol is safe during pregnancy. Work by Kohama et al, Phytother Res 20:3 found a dose of 30 mg daily helped relieve pain of pregnancy during the third trimester.

Work by Feng, Japan Journal Infect Dis 2008 61:4 found pycnogenol active against HIV, suggesting another course of treatment for AIDS.

Pycnogenol may help reduce metabolic syndrome risk factors. A study conducted at the Italian University of Chiete-Pescara followed 130 patients aged 45-55 given placebo or 50 mg of pine bark extract three times daily. After three months, there was significant improvement in obesity, HDL, hypertension, high blood sugar and high triglycerides. Half of the control group, despite the same diet and exercise regime, showed no changes. Phytotherapy Research 2013 January.

To date, some 220 published studies over the past 35 years have shown safety and efficacy of the extract. This includes 36 double- blind, placebo-controlled trials.

To summarize. Pycnogenol helps protect from heart disease and cancer, lowers blood sugar levels in type 2 diabetes, alleviates hypertension, metabolic syndrome, may prevent progression of Alzheimer’s, halts symptoms associated with lupus, prevents retinal deterioration, manages childhood asthma, allergies, venous thrombosis on airplanes, reduces menstrual pain, improves memory, treats male infertility, ADD, HIV, osteoarthritis and improves exercise endurance. Not bad for a tree bark!

Pinosylvan has been shown to be more active than resveratrol against Candida albicans and Saccharomyces cervisiae. Lee et al, Fitoterapia 76:2.

The New England Journal of Medicine, November 1995, reported on a study that a derivative of pine used as margarine, normalized cholesterol levels.

The waste from pulp mills is made into a sitostanol ester margarine, called Benecol.

It is very popular in Finland, taking over 7% of the margarine market, and now introduced to North America. Don’t laugh. Business Week estimates global sales will reach $400 million annually.

In 2002, Atria Oyj, of Finland introduced a meat product line containing the stanol esters, to go with their existing beetroot salad and potato salad already on the market.

Dr. Tatu Miettinen at the University of Helsinki, indicates sitostanol works in the intestine to keep the body from absorbing cholesterol. In the fall of 2001, Becel released their new “healthy” margarine packed with sterols.

Forbes Medi-Tech of Vancouver, commercialize innovative nutraceutical products derived from nature. Among them was Phytrol, a proprietary plant sterol, extracted from tall oil, a by- product of the paper pulping process. This is basically the oil sludge left over from the process of making paper.

An innovative company out of New Zealand, Enzo Nutraceuticals has found a way to extract the rich source of oligomeric proanthocyanidins, flavonoids, and flavonoid glycosides from Monterey Pine (P. radiata) without chemicals. The product, Enzogenol, has been shown in studies to be more potent than green tea or grape seed extract. Perhaps this technology could be utilized in Western Canada, in partnership with an enterprising forestry company.

This technology has several benefits over solvent extracted P. maritima from France. Important natural sugars and organic acids are retained. These glyco-proteins may provide a vehicle for antioxidants to attach to, or enter cells. These sugars may bind with glycosides and other bark compounds to convert original source molecules into fat-soluble compounds.

Enzogenol, from P. radiata, has been found to lower systolic blood pressure and improve spatial working memory in a five-week trial on 42 men aged 50-65 years.

The split groups were given extract and vitamin C, or only vitamin C in control group. Pipingas et al, Phytother Res 2008 August 5.

In only five weeks, spatial working memory improved the equivalent of 7 years and immediate recognition memory by 12 years.

A study at AUT University looked at the benefit of enzogenol on traumatic brain injury. The six and twelve week study suggested significant improvement in cognitive and other memory issues. A larger study will help to articulate this further.

You can check this company out at

A pine extract from Japan, TOYO-FVGTM containing 40% OPC and 80% polyphenols is now on the market, suggesting the need for research on Jack and Lodgepole Pine bark from our region.

Pine bark extracts show cholesterol lowering and atherosclerosis prevention possibility in animal trials by Sato et al, Biosci Biotech Biochem 2009 73:6.

Pine bark has application in foodstuffs including protein meats, in work by Vuorela et al, J Ag Food Chem 2006 53.

Limber Pine (P. flexilis) contains interesting compounds (see above) that have shown protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitory activity, with IC50 values ranging from 1.4-8.6 mcg/mL. Lee et al, Journal Nat Products 1998 61:11.

Mistletoe (Arceuthobium americanum) shows hypotensive effect, similar to Viscum album, the more famous European mistletoe. It shows anti-tumour activity, in studies conducted by Sealwry et al, Proc Am Soc Cancer Research 1959 3 62-63.

Darcy Williamson suggesting combining turkey tail mushroom fruiting bodies with this mistletoe for treating cancer. She suggests the lodgepole mistletoe for lung hemorrhage, as well as circulatory, respiratory, and stomach aid. She also suggests trying an infusion for emaciation and tuberculosis, but only for five days.

Only A. americanum has tested positive for toxic acetone precipitate.

This indicates a moderate level of toxic proteins, but too low for commercial application. Recent research has failed to find pharmacological active lectins in any Arceuthobium species as yet. Work by Stein et al, Eur J of Clinical Pharmacology 1994 47:1 showed fermented extracts from mistletoe (V. album) growing on pine to exhibit strong proliferation of lymphocytes.

The visible tufts of Mistletoe (A. americanum) produce pollen and seeds. These are formed on different plants, either male or female.

The mechanism of discharging ripe seeds is a wonder of nature. Each fruit contains one seed, and as the fruit ripens, the stalk supporting it lengthens and curves over. Then, at the same exact instant as the fully ripe fruit falls from the stalk, its outer skin contracts sharply, the seed inside is shot upwards, similar to the way a wet bar of soap will shoot out of your hands.

The flying seed can reach a speed of 80 km an hour, and land up to ten metres away. The nectar, attractive to ants and bees, is up to 95% sugar.

An irony of mistletoe is that it is susceptible to fungal attack. Wallrotheilla arceuthobiigrows on the female flowers, destroying the seed, and producing its own spore-producing organ that looks like miniature blackberries.

Fossilized, underground pine resin, or Amber (Succinum) is used in TCM for its sweet, neutral, calming and relaxing qualities. It is XUE PO, or HU PO in Mandarin, and FU PA, in Cantonese. It is known as “tiger’s soul, based on the old legend that when a tiger dies, its spirit enters the earth, transformed into this substance.

Amber has a specific gravity of 1.08, hardness of 2-2.5, and melts at 350-380° Celsius.

Amber combines well with lycium fruit, elk antler, or oriental cedar seed, for neuro-cardiac syndromes with anxiety, palpitations, forgetfulness, nightmares, and excessive nervous states.

Amber is used primarily to calm the mind and relax the nerves, improve memory, concentration and alertness.

It combines well with schisandra berry and elk antler for excessive dreaming and nightmares, especially in those prone to excessive stress.

Amber syrup was frequently used as a sedative, combined with opium, which worked well by itself.

It is used for infantile and epileptic seizures, a variety of menstrual problems including absence of periods, heavy and painful periods and in between period bleeding.

In the male, it helps relieve scrotum and penile pain and swelling; as well as blood in urine, or dark-cloudy urine. In the female, it relieves labial hematoma and uterine congestion.

One small study of 3 males with scrotal hematoma taking 0.9 grams twice daily as a powdered daily for 8-10 days showed significant benefit. Shanghai J Chin Med Herb 1958 11:33.

It is used for internal heat in the kidney and bladder; but contraindicated in Yin deficiency with empty heat. Combine with asian moneywort and Akebia caulis for difficult urination. For burning dysuria, combine with knotweed (Polygonum aviculare) and water plantain root.

The 1898 edition of the US Dispensatory listed rectified amber oil for internal use as an antispasmodic, and externally as a counterirritant for rheumatism.

It potentiates the sedative effect of other herbs and drugs such as anti-histamines, analgesics, narcotics and benzodiazepines.



Pinus contorta patients dream of being insecure, wanting self- confidence. There are delusions of being criticized, being looked down on and repudiated. Dwelling on past disagreeable occurrences. They are sensitive to opinion of others, anxiety when alone, anger from neglect, delusion of separation from world.

Desire for open air, cravings for bread, cold drinks, rich food, salt, spices, stimulants and tobacco. Aversion to fish and milk, worse from beans bread, coffee, fat, lentils, sweets.

Sweating after eating fatty or oily foods.

Heaviness of head, cervical region tensed, stiffness tension, coldness and pain in various parts of body.

DOSE - Proving by Steve Olsen with four provers and four cured cases in 1998. Potency unknown.

Pinus sylvestris is of real use in the treatment of weak ankles. Stiffness and gouty pains of the joints are relieved; especially finger joints. If there is skin itching over the joints and abdomen, it is worthy of a trial. General rheumatic, bronchial and skin symptoms.

Chilliness, number of flushes of heat.

For children with weak ankles; late in learning to walk. Craving for cold milk and half ripe bananas.

The patient wishes to do a great many things, undertaking them all and finishing none. Self reproach, sensitive to odours of others, dreams of being pregnant.

DOSE - Tincture to 30th potency. The mother tincture is prepared from the fresh shoots of the tree. First proving by Demeures with three drops of the tincture of needles and young twigs in 1845. This was followed by general effects of bathing in infusion of pine needles by Patzak in 1860s. Clinical notes by Farokh Master and a proving by Frans Vermeulen with seven female provers at 30c in 2006.

Pine Tar (Pix liquida) is one of the great cough medicines, acting favorably on all the mucous membranes. A specific spot, at the third costal cartilage where it joins the rib, is often painful. The skin may itch intolerably, with eruptions on the back of the hands.

DOSE - First to sixth potency. The attenuations are prepared from tar that is obtained from the wood of various pines. Introduced by Jeanes with no provings. Based on clinical observations and side effects of its topical use for skin eruptions and internal use as expectorant.

Turpentine has an affinity for bleeding mucous membranes. It is very useful whenever there is inflammation of the kidneys with bleeding- causing a dark, passive and fetid condition of the urine, and burning pain in the kidney region. This is often the result after acute disease in another part of the body.

There may be urethritis, and painful erections.

It is for pelvic peritonitis, and is worthy of a trial before resorting to surgery. Various bleeding or hemorrhage from the bowel responds to turpentine.

Turpentine may help erythema, urticaria or vesicular eruptions of the skin. Unbroken and painful chilblains are also relieved.

Wine makes vertigo worse. Fear of crossing a bridge, suicidal disposition by hanging.

DOSE - First to sixth potency. First proving by Seidel and Woost in 1832. Toxicology effects in Allen’s Encyclopedia; clinical observations by Hering and Vithoulkas.

Terebene is used whenever there is chronic bronchitis, or winter coughs; or where there is a sub-acute inflammation of the respiratory tract. It helps to loosen secretions, relieve tightening feeling, and promotes expectoration. Also useful for neurotic coughs, that can plague public speakers or singers. Cystitis when urine is alkaline and offensive.

DOSE - First potency. Terebene is made by shaking oil of turpentine with successive quantities of sulfuric acid and distilling it in a current of steam. It is colorless with thyme-like odor.

Succinum (from the fossilized pine amber resin). This is for nervous and hysterical symptoms, including asthma and affections of the spleen.

It is useful for those with a fear of close places, and fear of trains. It helps alleviate lachrymation and sneezing, as well as chronic bronchitis, asthma, and whooping cough.

Feeling that one has lost affection of friends. Desire to restore or bring back friendships. Dreams of being lost, in a town, in the past. Fear of things black, desire for sunlight. Feeling of electricity in body. Craving for fruit.

DOSE - Third potency. Five drop doses of the oil as well. The reason there are not more symptoms is because they are mostly placed under succinic acid below. A recent proving by Nuala Eising with 15 female and seven male provers at 12c and 30c potencies was done in 1997. See Plants by Vermeulen and Johnston volume three pages 1297-99.

Succinic acid is an active factor in the Citric Acid cycle, and is for hay-fever, paroxysmal sneezing, dropping of watery mucous from the nostrils; and asthma. It is useful in inflammation throughout the respiratory tracts with chest pains, as it improves cell respiration.

Succinic acid is related to blood formation and used in cases of anemia and leukemia; and in cerebral arteriosclerosis, with or without memory loss.

It is indicated for those children who have learning problems, and suffering the consequences of antibiotic treatment.

There may be an emotional inhibition, with a run-down feeling, apathy, depression, and lack of self-confidence.

The patient perspires easily at first sign of excitement, particularly the hands.

It also plays a role in duodenal ulcers that do not heal, enteritis, colitis and other conditions of the colon, including cancer.

Succinic acid is indicted in children with retarded growth and weak bones; or fractures slow to heal, and inflammation of cysts. Also used for itching of the eyelids, canthus and nose. Worse from drafts.

DOSE - 6th to 30th potency. Clinical symptoms by Weiner in 1880. Proving by Konig and Swoboda with 42 provers at 30x for duration of proving in 1984-5. Proving by Riley with twenty provers at 12c in 1996.



Pinus montana

Pine bud is indicated for non-inflammatory chronic rheumatism, regardless of the location. It may be accompanied by osteoarthritis in the spine, hip or knees.

Its action is primarily on the permanent and hard tissue and is very gentle on the elderly with symptoms of de-mineralization. It is useful with Birch Sap 1D, preferably given in the morning while fasting.

DOSE - 20-30 drops in water of the 1D glycerine macerate up to four times daily



Pine gives four different oils, one from the needles, two from the wood resin, and another from the heartwood. Each pine has it’s own distinctive scent.

Recent research, by Mühlbauer et al, Bone 2003 32:4 has found pine oil helps protect the aged ovariectomized rat, from bone loss, suggesting benefit in the inhibition of bone resorption.


CONSTITUENTS L-camphene, l-beta pinene (45%), l’alpha pinene, beta- phellandrene (48%), dipentene, borneol, bornyl acetate, mycrene (15%) and cadinene+muurolene (29%)

Pine needle oil is used in the treatment of respiratory infections. It may also be added to massage combinations for rheumatic or circulatory disorders, increasing the heart rate by irritation with vasodilation.

Alone, or combined with spruce oil, it may be rubbed directly into weak and tired adrenal glands, helping liven and increase bioelectrical energy.

The oil is useful for lymphatic congestion, as well as chronic sinusitis. It has a hormonal effect in diabetic conditions, or helps rejuvenation following cortisone therapy. Pine needle oil rejuvenates the mind, clearing mental fatigue; one of the main reasons health sanatoriums are built in pine forests.

The oil is anti-bacterial and anti-fungal, and useful in urinary and prostatic infections.

According to Dietrich Gumbel, oil from pine needle is both androgenic and parasympathetic stimulating.

Its main effect is on the corium level of the skin, especially useful for the gray oxygen poor skin of smokers

This oil, and numerous other pine needle oils are used in the perfume industry for masculine or green-based fragrances, such as Alliage and Panache.

Pine needle oil is cleansing, giving courage and strength, and a will to live. It is a male stimulant that helps promote desire or treat impotence.

Studies conducted by Ritch-Krc, Turner, and Towers, at the College of New Caledonia in Prince George, British Columbia indicate oleoresins from lodgepole pine show antimicrobial activity against E. coli, Staph aureus, Pseudomonas, Aspergillus and Candida albicans. Journal Ethnopharm 1996 52 151-6.

Diterpenes from pine resin, extracted in 70% alcohol are cytotoxic at 50 mcg/mL, Zaidi et al, Planta Medica 2006 72.

Work by Sadov, in Russia 1981, looked at using pine needle oil in honeybee hives. In colonies infected with 1-20% Varroa jacobsoni, pine oil was added 0.25% to honey or sugar paste in late winter and early spring. When compared to control hives, the quantity of sealed brood increased 1.25 to 1.5 times, and increased the honey harvest by 15-20%.

Work by Nebeker et al, Can J of Botany 1995 73 found significant difference in volatiles of diseased and healthy lodgepole pine.

In unhealthy trees, with one or more disease, the levels of alpha- pinene, camphene, terpinene, tricylclene and bornyl acetate are significantly higher than normal

Mycrene, camphor, 4-allylanisole and terpeneol are significantly lower in diseased trees.

Exhausted pine and spruce needles have been inoculated with Candida mycodermaand significantly increase protein content available as fodder. Pine protein content reached 18-19%, and that of spruce 15-16% after only four days exposure.


CONSTITUENTS terpineol and other sesquiterpene alcohols, ketones, ethers such as estragole, fenchone, fenchyl alcohol, borneol.

True pine oil is distilled from the heartwood, stump wood and roots of various pine species, including Ponderosa pine. The wood chips are steam distilled and can be used in low cost detergents, soaps, and household cleaners like “Lestoil”, Lysol, Pine Sol, paint manufacture and in the mining industry for flotation. Products such as Pine Kleen Liquid Disinfectant Cleaner at up to 30% pine oil.

Fleas find it offensive, so it can be put to good use with your pets. Veterinarian products often use pine oil in disinfectant sprays and in insecticides as a solvent carrier.

The oil is almost terpene-less, mixing in alcohol without clouding.

In perfume work, the oil blends well with rosemary, cedarwood, thuja, citronella, rosewood, ho leaf, and oak moss.

Terpeniol is used by the creative chemist to create synthetic anethole, and other perfume compounds.

Fire killed pine stumps are rich in essential oils, and make for very efficient extraction of pinewood oil. The wood chips make a good fire making resource, helping start fires, even in the pouring rain.


Oil obtained from the needles and twigs of limber pine (P. flexilis) yields about 0.867% of an oil rich in bornyl acetate (15%); and saponification value of 43.14.


The Western yellow pine (P. ponderosa) needles produce about 0.5% of an essential oil upon distillation.

The bark oil is a by-product of the manufacture of so-called forest wool that was used in mattresses at one time. Ponderosa pine phloem and cones contain higher proportions of alpha pinene and less carene than the resin.

The needles have higher content of beta pinene, up to 45.7%, with about 8% each of estragole and delta-3-carene.

The oil fully inhibits the growth of Fusarium culmorum and
F. solani at 2% dilutions, and F. poae at 5%. Krauze-Baranowska, Zeit fur Natuforschung 2002 57:5-6.

The oil has a beautiful, caramel and vanilla like scent that is valuable in perfume blends.


The needles and twigs of the introduced P. cembra yield about 3% of an essential oil that is almost colour-less and with a fine odour. It consists of alpha and beta pinene and cadinene. A cone oil is produced from P. cembra, that is very pleasant.


The seeds of Scots Pine yield an essential oil with diuretic and respiratory stimulating properties.

Scots Pine needle essential oil consists of bornyl acetate and the usual monoterpenes, such as alpha and beta pinene. Twenty-year old trees yield higher levels of essential oil than 90 years old trees, in one study as least.

Mugo Pine essential oil exhibits anti-oxidant activity. Grassman et al, J Ag Food Chem 2003 51:26.


Pine tar essential oil is produced by the dry distillation of the resin, or pitch. It is dark brown, and very strong in odour. It is often mixed up to 50% in skin ointments for eczemas, scabies, psoriasis and ichthyosis; or up to 5% as an antiseptic for ringworm and other fungal infection, dandruff and other scalp problems.

In the crude form it is used in veterinary ointments for mastitis, or barbed wire cuts, or a little pine tar in hot water is given to horses, dogs or cattle for chronic cough. It also is used to seal the bottom of wooden cross-country skis. From a naturopathic perspective it is best to avoid pine tar, as it is a possible carcinogenic agent over time.

Studies conducted at the College of New Caledonia by Ritch et al, showed lodgepole pine pitch contains definite anti-microbial activity.

Pine resin was traditionally ground and steeped in water, called Tar Water, for smallpox, ulcers and syphilis.


Tall oil comes from the Swedish word TALL, meaning spruce, and German OL for oil. The Swedes first called it TALLOLJA, meaning pine oil, due to its appearance in process of making paper. Because pine oil already meant needle essential oil, the Germans coined the term Tallol.

This resinous goo is the “black liquor” from processing pine into pulp, with annual production in the United States at over 200,000 tons.

Heptane, derived from the resin, was used to develop the octane scale for gasoline.

From one hundred tonnes of pulp, three tonnes of this sticky residue is left. When this pine oil is combined 40/60 with diesel fuel it reduces emissions of nitrogen oxide and carbon dioxide; produces better gas mileage, and a little more zip to the pedal. Arbokem in Vancouver produces a product called arbotane, that Canada Post uses in delivery trucks. Maybe that is why mail delivery takes so long. Just kidding!

Fatty acids, such as palmitic, linoleic and oleic acid can easily be extracted from tall oil. Cosmetic companies such as Cover Girl and Max Factor use Tall oil glycerides for waterproof mascara and pencils for eyelashes. The fatty acids are found in Armour All car waxes and pastes, various pumice hand cleansers and Gold Label Antiseptic Hand Cleaner.

Tall oil is used to produce high purity sterols for the pharmaceutical and nutraceutical markets. A recent joint venture, announced in September 2001, saw the largest sterol plant in the world built in Savannah, Georgia. Benecol is a sterol-rich, edible spread substitute for butter derived from tall oil.

Other products include conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA, which has both functional and nutraceutical application. Fractionation of tall oil yields rosin.


CONSTITUENTS 80% abietic acid anhydride, which converts to abietic and sylvic acids. It may contain pimaric acid, dehydropimaric acid, levopimaric acid, and sandaracopimaric acid. Small amounts of diterpene alcohols, aldehydes, sterols and phenolics.

Rosin, or colophony is residue left over after turpentine is distilled off, or from fractionation of tall oil. Rosin oil is used in printing inks, varnishes and to adulterate boiled linseed.

Rosin varies from a fine white powder to a blackish brown in the crude state. It is most often left over from the removal of turpentine from the oleoresin, and used in adhesives, wax, varnish, soaps and in the sizing of paper. In 1938, 38% of the production of rosin was used to produce yellow bar laundry soap.

Cosmetics, including mascaras, lipsticks, eye-shadow, concealer creams, nail varnish; and medicinals such as wart removers, cold sore creams, nappy creams, hemorrhoid creams, transparent soaps, hair removing wax, dental floss, sun screens, blister creams and first aid ointments are manufactured from this product.

Industry uses rosin for fireworks, insecticide and disinfectants, pressure-sensitive adhesives, and emulsifying synthetic rubber.

An oil distilled from pine rosin, called retinol, is used as a solvent for phosphorus and has some pharmaceutical applications.

Minor uses of rosin including chewing gums, and coating the inside of natural beer casks.

It is used in music for stringed instruments, such as violin, banjo bridge, and by gymnasts, ballet and flamenco dancers, fencers, boxers, bull riders, ten pin bowlers and baseball pitchers. It is applied to machinery belts to prevent slipping.

Rosin is used in perfumery as a fixative for lower quality products.

For medicinal purpose, the paler resins are preferred. These are used principally in ointments and plasters. The ointment is used as a stimulant for boils and skin ulcers. Rosin may be useful in psoriasis, toothache, boils and skin cancers.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, colophony is used to treat rheumatism, ringworm, bronchitis, taken internally and applied externally.

Rosin contains sterols, mainly sitosterol, a precursor of cortisone. In 1968, the first factory for the production of steroids from pine pulp extractives was built in Russia. Russia pioneered the commercial synthetic production of vitamins A and E from pine needles.


- P. contorta - levo-beta-phellandrane, camphene, carene, resins including diterpenic acid, bitters, and about 35% essential oil.
- P. banksiana - a mixture of dextro and levo alpha pinene, an admixture of levo beta pinene, both bicyclic in structure.

The oil has a characteristic odour, pungent when fresh, and pleasantly orange-like with time. Turpentine is derived medicinally from the gummy pitch of various fir, pine, spruce and larch trees all over the world. It is highly antiseptic, and useful for acute and chronic lung conditions. Inhalation through steaming is indicated for pleurisy, pneumonia, whooping cough, croup and tuberculosis.

It is used in commercially prepared extracts for coughs and colds, such as Buckley’s Cough Syrup, a stimulating expectorant.

Externally, use it for poultices, liniments and salves for injury, infection and pain. It is not recommended for prolonged periods as it is a counter-irritant. In Germany, topical turpentine preparations for rheumatic and neuralgic pain are easily available.

Dr. Daniel Penoel related a story of a few drops of turpentine producing an opening for drainage in a severely congested lymphatic case, but this is not to be repeated by the amateur therapist.

The oil is useful for cystitis, and dribbling urine, but contraindicated for kidney inflammation. Internally or externally, it gives urine the smell of violets.

Basically, turpentine is an astringent restorative for individuals with weak recuperative power, and damp cold, catarrhal problems of the lungs and urogenital region. Paradoxically it is useful in deficient heat conditions.

In small doses it is carminative, helping to relieve excess gas, and can even be used in some cases of diarrhea, through disinfecting and anti-fermenting properties.

Dr. Felter says it best, that turpentine “is always a remedy for atony and debility, never for active and plethoric conditions.”

Rectified turpentine oil can be used to soften or dissolve the gutta percha in the root canal space to facilitate endodontic treatment by heating it to 71 degrees C. For smaller jobs, or preparation of space for a post, use the oil at 37 degrees C.

In Russia, white and yellow turpentine baths are used to improve the blood flow in lower limbs of diabetic patients. Davydova, Voprosky Kurortologii Fiziolerapii Lechebnoi Fizicheskoi Kul’tury May/June 1998 will give you more details- if you read Russian.

A study in the same journal by Ludianskii (1992), showed turpentine baths give relief to patients suffering disseminated sclerosis, a painful collagen-vascular disease involving inflammation and stiffening of muscles.

Commercial turpentine oil is useful for thinning or cleaning oil paints, etc, but is not medicinal grade; and usually a pure petroleum product that was never near a pine tree.

Steam distilled turpentine oil is used in candy, baked goods, gelatins, relishes, puddings, meat products and chewing gums; all at less than 20 ppm.

Turpentine oil applied to severe wounds of livestock infested with fly larvae helps to remove the dead skin tissue, while keeping the area antiseptic.

For use as an animal vermifuge, five to eight drops of oil are put onto a sugar cube and given three times daily for several weeks. Various poly-terpene resins are insecticidal.

A number of turpentine oils are produced for the perfume industry.

The most important is sulphate turpentine, a very cheap and plentiful by-product of pulp and paper. Although not a true essential oil, it yields alpha and beta pinenes, dipentene, terpinolene, camphene and other monocyclic terpenes.

These are used to make aroma chemicals like the “rose alcohols”, geraniol, citronellol, nerol and their esters citral. Citrus, lemongrass, nutmeg, peppermint, spearmint, cinnamon and licorice flavours can be re-assembled from these compounds.

Menthol from turpentine is added to cigarette tobacco, and to cosmetic and toilet products. No wonder so many smokers of menthol cigarettes develop lung cancer.

Beta pinene is used to produce synthetic lemon, lime, peppermint, spearmint, nutmeg and l-menthol. Many of these chemicals are used in dishwashing, fabric, and laundry soaps as well as air fresheners.

CAUTION – Turpentine oil can be fatal in doses as small as 15 ml for children. Doses of 140 ml can be fatal to adults. Pregnant women should avoid turpentine oil.

Vanillin is produced by the alkaline oxidation of lignin sulfonic acid from waste sulfite liquor. It is used as a flavouring agent and intermediate in pharmaceuticals. L-dopamine for treating Parkinson’s disease starts out from vanillin.

Vanillin possesses anti-microbial, anti-mutagenic and anti-oxidant activity. It inhibits the growth of various fungi and may have application in a variety of fruit based foods and drinks. Fitzgerald et al, J Ag Food Chem 2005 53.

Vanillin works synergistically with thyme and mint oils for control of grey mold rot, Botrytis cinerea. Rattanapitigorn et al, Int J Aroma 16:3-4.

Lodgepole and Jack Pine form hybrids in the Edmonton-Edson area of the province. Although they look like Lodgepole, the turpentine is dominated by the bicyclic terpenes related to Jack Pine, as compared to the monocyclic terpene phellandrene in a ratio of about 3:1.

Amber essential oil

This is produced by destructive (dry) distillation of Amber. The fossil resin is odorless, but those pieces unfit for jewelry, as well as the dust yields so-called crude Amber oil, which is dark brown, clear oil, with distinctly smoky, tar-like, resinous and leathery fragrance.

The dry distilled amber yields 60-65% amber varnish, 15-20% oil and 2% distilled acids.

Also known as oleum succinum, or oil of amber of Venice, this distilled product was used from 15th to 17th century by artists such as Leonardo de Vinci, Raphael and Rembrandt to give an everlasting varnish. Mediums based on oil of amber were applied to violins and other bowed musical instruments.

It is used in some perfume work, combining well with labdanum, castoreum, or sweetened with other oils for typical leather bases to men’s after shaves and colognes.

The rectified Amber oil is the steam distillation of the crude amber oil, yielding a yellowish clear oil that is more camphor-like, and reminiscent of the “still note” in fresh distilled fir and spruce needle oils.

Rectified oil of amber is made by combining one pint oil of amber to six pints water and distilling until 4 pints have passed with oil into receiver, and then separate the oil from the water.

Oil of amber was used traditionally for affections of the central nervous system, brain, memory, spine disorders, nervous stomach, endocrine ailments.

King notes it is a “stimulant, diuretic, and antispasmodic and has been employed with benefit in amenorrhea, hysteria, dysmenorrheal, tetanus, epilepsy, pertussis, infantile convulsions and various other spasmodic the latter affection it should be rubbed along the spine either alone or combined with an equal part of laudanum and three or four pasts of olive oil.”


From the seeds of P. sylvestris, a fixed oil yielding about 32%, with 54.5% linoleic acid is pressed. It is a brownish-yellow colour with sweet taste. It is commonly called fir seed oil in the trade, and as it dries readily is used in preparation of varnish.

The dried and ground bark of this tree has been extracted with ether in Finland, yielding about 6% fatty oil with over 50% oleic, and 27% linolenic acids.

Pine seed oil from Lodgepole pine (P. contorta) has been found to contain 14-MHD, or 14-methylhexadecanoic acid in concentration of 0.02-1.15%. It may be of interest that this ester derivative is usually confined to lipids in animals, and yet is found in pine and ginkgo biloba seeds.

Pine seed oil from swiss stone pine (P. cembra) has a very high iodine value of 150-159. It has a saponification value of 191.8 and specific gravity of 0.930.

The oil has a golden yellow colour and pleasant taste. It is composed chiefly of palmitic and linoleic acids, with oleic and linolenic acids in very minor amounts. The oil is used in Siberia for edible purposes. It is very closely related to Siberian Cedar.


The air-dried bark of Ponderosa Pine (P. ponderosa) yields 3.4% of a yellow wax with a melting point of 58° C.

In the Western States, there is an annual lumber production of 3 billion board feet, with most bark burned.

The free acid fraction contains behenic and lignoceric acids, resins acids and unsaturated fatty acids. The resins acids melt at 83° C. The unsaturated fatty acids have an iodine number of 93.4, mainly composed of oleic acid.

The neutral fraction can be steam-distilled and yields 0.2% essential oil with a mixture of alpha and beta pinene, dipentene, borneol and its acetate.



Scotch Pine (P. sylvestris) hydrosol is quite resinous, and yet green and refreshing. It has a pH of 4.0-4.2.

In addition to its generally stimulating and analgesic properties, Suzanne Catty mentions it has some merit in treating attention deficit disorder ADD, in adults in combination with cinnamon leaf hydrosol. Interesting!

Experiments on internal use include hypotensive, and hypo- cholesteremic properties; as well as reductions in arterial plaque buildup.

Traditionally, pine tar water was used in Europe as a rubbing lotion for animals with vermin, and a hair tonic. For hair growth, the water is mixed with wild daffodil leaves and rubbed onto scalp.

Darcy Williamson suggests lodgepole hydrosol is a great tonic and effective immune system stimulant. Use 3 mls per litre of water taken throughout the day for up to a week. It can be used full strength as a body splash when tired or lacking energy.

The distilled water of the green cones taketh away wrinkles in the face, being laid on with cloths.              JOSSELYN



Lodgepole Pine (P. contorta) aids in the release of self- condemnation related to loss of purpose. It helps motivate towards a particular goal. In the negative state, there may be despair, despondency, and loss of direction.

The positive aspects are related to walking your own path, in the assurance that there is movement towards something greater.              CHASE & PAWLIK

Lodgepole essence invites us to rediscover our centre and remain firmly rooted in the midst of external dramas.

In love, we often feel we are in a whirlwind, overwhelmed, unbalanced and frantic. Lodgepole assists us to move into a loving way of relating while remaining centred and grounded.              CAN FOREST

Lodgepole Pine is about crossing a new threshold of experience based on reaching that level of standing your ground for yourself—- being clearly rooted in that self-assertion and trusting the self to follow wherever that takes you and be open to that experience.                HIGH SIERRA

Scotch Pine (P. sylvestris) relates to the soul qualities of regret and forgiveness. The negative Pine state clings to their feelings of guilt. This may be the recent or archetypal such as original sin of religion. The result is no joy or energy in life. Those benefiting from the flower essence are very demanding of themselves, but also take on blame for the mistakes of others. When ill, they apologize to everyone. They have an almost masochistic desire to sacrifice themselves, often unconsciously choosing partners that feed it.

There is need for more acceptance of our imperfections and the need to make mistakes for growth. Holding on to mistakes, and being unable to love and forgive themselves makes them unable to love and forgive others.          BACH

Pine Cone (P. sylvestris) essence is the key remedy for those who are trapped by the authoritarian power of others, but feel they cannot escape. Such inhibition leads to fear of evil and the devil in a kind of priesthood influence of power.

Pine Cone is the remedy for those needing the courage to face reality and let do of the ideas and opinions of those in “authority”. These people often have great insight, but lack the courage to trust it, realizing they will then have to stand on their own two feet.                   BAILEY

Jack pine essence nourishes, expands and protects the sacred spaces with us. With Jack Pine we grow in our sense of worthiness, and open to inner vision.

When needed we tend to make mountains out of molehills, believing ourselves to be failures, unnourished and unworthy.                     CANADIAN FOREST

Ponderosa Pine essence helps us whether man or woman to honour brotherhood; and to embrace the masculine side of our nature.                         CANADIAN FOREST

Amber essence is for people exhibiting memory loss, inability to make decisions, or those with eccentric behaviour and anxiety. It helps to activate an altruistic and passive nature; and as a thought amplifier, it creates a realization of the spiritual intellect.                  PEGASUS

Amber essence aligns the subtle bodies with the physical bodies, transmutes negative energy into positive energy, and emits a sunny and soothing energy that calms and enlivens the disposition.                     TREE FROG

Amber essence protects against negative energies, strengthens cellular systems and heals ligaments and joints.


Pine Pollen essence is for lightness and freedom of decision.                HORUS



The melody of Pine is C, D, E ,F, A, B with a Soul Tone of D and auric colour of Orange.



Pine increases the ability to activate energies of the third eye. Clairvoyant sight is enhanced; and affects perception of subtle body energies. When pine is taken, meditate with eyes closed upon something alive. Visualize a clear eye in the middle of the forehead opening up and looking around. Pine resin or oil can be lightly rubbed into this area. Vibrational effects are best felt in the music of the violin, as rosin is used on the blow to create friction.

The smell of pine also affects this area. Pine is associated with tenacity and patience. Cats, when around people with negative thought forms, tend to develop unusual ailments. Pine added to the diet, will enable the cat to know itself better and relax, understanding these thought forms are not their own. Pine has added effect when Jupiter is positively aspected.                  GURUDAS

The first step in learning to talk to plants is cultivating politeness, realizing that the pine trees that have been here for 700 million years must have been doing something before we cam on the scene a mere million years ago. Besides pining away for our existence. The first step is to respect our elders. Pine trees know a great deal more than we ever will about being pine trees and about what pine trees do. So all the nonsense you learned in school has got to go, especially the botany.                 BUHNER

The Graceful Pine

“My needles are appendages like your human hands.
While you grab food, I grab energy, light and water.
The length allows me that much greater intake of nutrients.
The long needles reflect my energy configuration.
The energy configurations of all trees are fairly exact to fit an essence expression.
In my case, I express gracefulness and charm.”


Like other pines, lodgepole helps you to release self-judgment. If self blame and feeling of worthlessness have led to despondency, despair and a loss of goal direction, then lodgepole pine can motivate you to begin again. It provides a sense of valuing self that feels like a stabilizing inner core of certainty. Its energy is also dependable and tenacious, like a rock that you climb onto to get your bearings, when you feel caught in a raging stream. As you set off again, you are stronger, more durable and more focused on your course.             CHASE & PAWLIK

Ponderosa Pine works profoundly when you have been holding a grudge against another, or if you have been unable to forgive yourself. It calms you so that you can tap your spiritual knowingness in times of intensity. Ponderosa Pine strengthens your compassion for yourself, and ask you to forgive your imperfections.             CHASE & PAWLIK

Throughout the ancient Asian world, amber was considered to contain special supernatural powers and healing energies that protected those who wore it on their bodies. It remains a very popular material for making malas, the bead rosaries of Asia used for meditation and mantra practice.

The mystical lore associated with amber inevitably became entangled with its reputed medicinal properties, but all magic and mysticism aside, amber possesses therapeutic properties, particularly for disorders of the nervous system.


The Latin word for amber was ELECTRUM, and hence electricity. The Greek word for amber, also Electrum, meant “I protect”.

It was a one time also called LYNCURIUS, or lynx stone, from the belief that amber was solidified lynx urine.

In Greek myth, amber was formed from the tears of the sun nymphs called Heliads, when they wept for the downfall of their brother Phaethon.

Medieval alchemists considered it a sun symbol. The Speculum Lapidium of Camillus Leonardus (1502) said that amber will cure disorders of the throat and belly, counteract poison, and when laid on the breast of a sleeping woman will make her confess all her sins.                      W ALKER

What is arthritis? Picture first of all a forest of pine trees that creak and grate against each other in the wind. The scene is one of stiffness and dessication and describes metaphorically a young woman who has no outlet for her passions, whose relationships are blasted and tormented.                 THOMAS COWAN



Pitys was the ancient Greek word for pine tree. The nymph Pitys tended pine trees for the grumpy Boreas, God of the North Wind. But Pitys was lured away from her nymphly duty by horny, goaty Pan with his enticing pipes. They scampered up a mountain to the piney fastnesses of a high, cold grove and thereafter Pan did not have to pine for Pitys. But Boreas seized the pitiful Pitys and threw her against a rocky ledge where she turned into a pine tree, and forever after when one of her boughs is broken, Pitys weeps resin drops, tears in remembrance of Pan.      CASSELMAN

Amberella is a golden haired woman of Baltic folklore, who was pulled into the ocean by the Prince of the Seas, while grasping for a piece of floating amber.

Destined to her fate, she returned as a vision of a goddess to her parents. She began to throw large chunks of amber to them as farewell gifts, and then was gone. People of the Baltics say that when the sea rages it is bringing Amberella home, and as proof they show the shoreline full of amber after the storm has abated.

Pine Root and Beaded Head were the first two beings on Earth. They performed extraordinary feats of spiritual power and prepare for the coming of humans. When they finish their stay on earth, both Pine Root and Beaded Head are transformed into stars and plants.                  NORTHERN CREE

Once, in the hot summer sunshine, a gourd began to stretch and twine itself around a fat pine tree. Swiftly the gourd plant grew, twisting and turning until it came to the very top of the tree.

“Look at me!” cried the gourd. “In less than a hundred days I have reached as high as you, but it took you more than a hundred years to get this tall”.

The pine tree murmured in answer. “Yes, I have passed through the heat of a hundred summers and have borne the cold of a hundred winters in order to reach this lofty height. But I know I shall still be here this winter, whereas the first cold frost will bring you down.”

And just as the pine predicted, when the cold weather came, the vines of the gourd shriveled and shrank and fell to the ground.                   PELLOWSKI

The pine cone is a phallic symbol of the god’s fecundity. Ariadne, the orgiastic goddess, whose worship often demanded blood sacrifice, was represented at Dionysian revels by an ivy-entwined, cone-tipped branch. Her devotees, the Bacchae, drank pine sap wine, laced with ivy and fly agaric.                   GIFFORD

Greek legend also tells how the pine became evergreen. Rhea (goddess of the new moon, and wife of Cronos) was betrayed by her lover Arys, so she avenged herself by turning Arys into a pine tree. Then, filled with remorse, she wept beneath the tree, where Zeus took pity on her and decreed that the tree would ever more keep its leaves so that the young goddess could enjoy their company the year round.                   GIFFORD

The Greeks worshipped Attis as god of the pine. The Romans instituted what most people today would considered a barbaric ritual performed to initiate the priests of Cybele. First the people cut down a pine tree and paraded it through the streets. They danced and drank wine mixed with pine nuts. They slashed themselves with knives and let their blood flow over the tree. The next day, a wild orgy followed in which people wantonly engaged in sex to symbolize impregnation of the earth. As part of the ritual, the initiates had to castrate themselves, as had Attis, before they could enter Cybele’s priesthood.                 TAMRA ANDREWS

There is a beautiful Swedish legend of longing. Through knots in the pine trunk sometimes a female wood spirit slips into the human world to grow.

A famous beauty of Smaland was accepted as a member of a family. Here history was in some doubt, but she did her part in the house and farm work, and no question of her human quality was raised, unless by strangers, who were astonished by her height and her bright beauty, and who, listening to the lulling tones of her voice, thought them as soft as the murmur in a pine. All went well with the family until a knot in a pine board of the house wall fell out and a way of escape to the forest was so opened. The woman crept to the place and listened to that music of the outer world, that world of her youth and her dreams, and, longing intensely to return to it, her body shrank and shrank until she was a tiny elf. With a smile and a tear, she looked about her home for years, nodded a good-bye, and was gone from that place forever.                 SKINNER



No one likes trials. Trials introduce delays, frustrations, grief, and sometimes, a sense of failure in our lives. But we often don’t realize that trials can yield great benefits.

I think of the example provided by the Jack Pine. This forest tree grows in fire-prone areas of the north, where a blaze can devastate a stand in short order.

Yet the Jack Pine ultimately thrives specifically because of fire- its seed cones are encased in a thick wax coating and the seeds can be released only following exposure to intense heat. When you encounter your next fiery trial, try to focus on the benefits instead of the heat. Look for the lessons, and treat your burden as a weight- training exercise that will build muscle, strength and endurance.                 G. MOHAMMED

Pine Cones could hold a secret to protecting the human brain from cellular death induced by strokes. Researchers have found that certain tannins from plants can inhibit the enzyme in the body that initiates the damage, thereby saving the brain from harm.

Gallotannins, can be found in pine cones, and extracts from these may be the basis for future treatments to help combat the effects of stroke. But to have significant benefit, these medicines may need to be administered within minutes after a stroke.

Sometimes, our body can seem to be our own worst enemy. But that is what happens when our physiological scales are tipped too far in one direction and balance is lost. Unless we take fast action to re- establish harmony in the body, we suffer, sometimes fatally. Let’s not wait for a catastrophic event to galvanize us into action. Seek to achieve balance today- by eating right, staying active, and getting enough rest. And don’t forget the great powers of prayer, faith, and a mellow constitution.                   GINA MOHAMMED

If the white pine tree were human, I’m pretty sure it would be the kind of friend who would use his one day off each week to help you move. The kind of friend that you could call at midnight to come pick you up at the airport. The kind of friend that brings you homemade chicken soup when you’re ill.                 DEWEY

The more familiar fragrance of the forest is that of the pine, Pinus species. On a sweltering summer afternoon the pinewill emit an odor...a medicinal mixture of various esters of pinosylvin. These and other aerosols are from the truly ancient pharmacopoeia of the pine. The pinosylvin is a natural antibiotic. When emitted as an ester form it exerts in the forest a stimulating effect on the process of breathing itself. It also functions as a mild narcotic. These aerosols have an anesthetic effect on the body, bringing about relaxation.                 BERESFORD-KROEGER

All trees of the global forest produce a fingerprint of sound. This sound is as individual as the iris is to the eye, or the thumbprint to the hand...The sounds—both audible and inaudible—of the pine are sharper when compared with the rounder sounds of a red oak. The movement of air as it travels through and with the pine is more finely dissected by pine needles to make the sharp whine, which the red oak leaves are more like the flapping of sails on a yacht.


Amber brings to mind one who is pale, thin, durable (yet soft), natural, tempered by life experiences; an ancient soul, one with a connection to trees and their well-being; a slow moving, thoughtful person; a well-grounded person; a solid, well-rooted individual; a forest lover or an environ-mentalist...Amber beads are the tears of ancient trees.


When we were growing up, young ladies weren’t allowed to attract attention in many ways, but chewing gum was one method we could use. We’d chew gum from the clear sap of young pine trees. It used to be quite the thing to smack it just right. If you could do it rhythmically—pop it every other bite—that was really good. It was considered kind of sexy but acceptable. Popping was a way to get people to notice you. It said, “I’m sexy and available.”


Some people, some nations, are permanently in shade. Some people cast a shadow. Lengths of elongated darkness precede them, even in church or when the sun is in, as they say, mopped up by the dirty cloth of the clouds. A puddle of dark forms around their feet. It’s very pine-like. The pine and darkness are one.              BAIL



INFUSION - Take 30 grams of buds, or wood shavings to one litre of boiling water. Steep and drink three cups daily.

DECOCTION – As above, but simmer for twenty minutes. As this is much stronger, take 1-2 tablespoons as needed. Also add to hot baths for therapeutic benefit. Caution- pregnant women should use pine teas with extreme care.

TINCTURE – 2-4 ml from wood shavings.

Wood shaving tincture is made by first decocting at 1:2 for one hour and then cooled, strained and preserved with 40% alcohol. Needle tinctures are made at 1:5 and 50% alcohol. Pollen tincture is 1:4 at 95%, as is resin tincture.

COUGH SYRUP – Take one cup finely chopped inner bark and cover with one cup of boiling water. After two hours add one half cup of food grade alcohol and let stand for three days. Strain and add 1.5 cups of honey. Bottle and store.

PYCNOGENOL - 25-50 mg up to three times daily or as directed.

ESSENTIAL OIL – (from various pines) Take 3-5 drops in honey water daily internally; or 2-3 drops in bowl of steaming water. Cover head with towel and inhale for respiratory problems.

PINE NUTS – 3-6 grams, three times daily for bleeding hemorrhoids. Up to 15 grams twice daily for chronic constipation. For chilblains- take 30 grams of pine nuts and crush into a paste in vegetable oil. Apply to affected area.

PINE RESIN The resin is ground to powder. Dose-1-3 grams daily.

PINE SALVE – Cover three cups of fresh pine needles with two cups of canola oil and extract for eight hours in a low temperature crock pot. Remove needles and put one cup of pine resin (gum) and heat until dissolved. Add up to one quarter of beeswax and dissolve. Add two tablespoons honey and pour into containers.

CAUTION – Lodgepole and Ponderosa pine needles contain up to 0.8% isocupressic acid (also found in Juniperus communisat 2%). This has been found to be a possible abortifacient in cattle, metabolizing into imbricatoloic, agathic, dihydroagathic and tetrahydroagathic acids. Best avoided.

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