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How to Take Care of Austrian Pine Trees

The Austrian pine (Pinus nigra) is a hardy, low-maintenance evergreen tree that’s often planted as windbreaks and border rows. The Austrian pine tree has dark green, dense foliage with 2- to 4-inch long needles that grow in groups of two. The tree can reach up to 60 feet tall and 40 feet wide, usually maturing into a natural pyramidal shape. Originating from Austria, Yugoslavia and northern Italy, the Austrian pine tree grows best in USDA hardiness zones 4 through 7, where winters are colder and temperatures can dip down to minus 25 degrees Fahrenheit.

Water your Austrian pine trees deeply to soak the soil down to the roots only during times of drought or prolonged dry spells. Regular or supplemental watering is not necessary.

Prune your Austrian pine trees in late winter or early spring to remove all dead, diseased or damaged limbs.

Treat your Austrian pine trees for the common fungal disease Diplodia tip blight by pruning away the diseased or cankered branches. Spray the pine trees with a fungicide according to the directions on the label.

Control pine needle scale infestations by spraying your Austrian pine trees with an appropriate insecticide when the scale insects are mobile and in the “crawler” stage, which is usually in June or July. Spray your pines with a dormant horticultural oil in late winter to kill the over-wintering scale insects.

Watch out for bark beetles infesting your Austrian pine trees. Look for holes bored into the pine trees’ trunks to detect bark beetles. Get rid of the bark beetles using an appropriate insecticide, according to the instructions on the label.


Dothistroma needle blight is another fungal disease that attacks Austrian pine trees, causing the needles to brown and develop reddish-brown spots or bands. Spray the Austrian pines with a Bordeaux mixture or another copper-based fungicide in mid-May and again in mid-to-late June.


Avoid fertilizing your Austrian pine trees, because doing so can cause overgrowth. You can, however, spread a 2- to 3-inch layer of bark mulch around the base of the pine trees to help control weeds and retain soil moisture.

Wear gloves and eye protection when you’re spraying your Austrian pine trees with insecticides, fungicides or other chemicals.

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