- Animal lovers
- Lovers of good things
Evergreen tree with majestic umbrella-like foliage that stands up well to hot, dry weather. Great producer of pine nuts, so beloved by Mediterraneans who use them in the excellent cuisine. Ideal for lovers of hot summers, which go well with succulent pesto pastas.
Scientific name: Pinus pinea
Common name: Stone pine
It belongs to the Pinaceae family and lives in coastal areas of the European Mediterranean, as far as Lebanon. Up to 30 meters tall, it has a short, erect trunk with gray-brown bark that cracks into large plates and tends to dark red with time. The large, expansive crown with fairly long needles takes the shape of an umbrella in older specimens. The pine cones are ovoid and quite large; in fact, they take 36 months to mature. When mature, they open to release the seeds, small pine nuts barely 2 cm in size. This is why it is known as a pine nut pine.
Along with the olive and the oak, the stone pine is a symbol of Italy. It is commonly found in our peninsula, but the most famous specimen lives in Posillipo, one of the most beautiful neighborhoods of Naples. Featured in a variety of paintings and photographs, it has been called Italy's most famous tree by National Geographic. It lived for 129 years, felled due to disease. In the mid-1990s, Legambiente (Italian environmental NGO) decided to replant it, to restore the romantic view of the sea.
The most commonly used part is, of course, pine nuts. Rich in protein, vitamins and fiber, they have been eaten in Europe since the Paleolithic era. For the Ancient Romans they were part of the chow for soldiers. Now they are essential for a good pesto, but we also find them in sweet recipes. Our favorites are castagnaccio and grandma's cake.
What makes it unique
maximum life expectancy