Traditional uses and benefits of Korean Pine

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Korean pine Quick Facts
Name: Korean pine
Scientific Name: Pinus koraiensis
Origin Eastern Asia: Manchuria (Ussuri River basin) in northeast China, Mongolia, Primorsky Krai and Khabarovsk Krai in the far east of Russia, Korea and Japan
Colors Green when young turning to brown as they mature (Cone)
Shapes They are ovoid or cylindrical-ovoid in shape, 3.5 to 4.5 inches (9 - 11 cm) long and 2 to 2.5 inches (5 - 6 cm) broad. (Cone)
Taste Extremely crunchy having a salty taste
Health benefits Support earache, epitasis, cough, cold, influenza, kidney and bladder complaints, skin complaints, wounds, sores, burns and boils
Korean pine or Korean Pinenut scientifically known as Pinus koraiensis is a species of pine belonging to Pinaceae (Pine family). It is a member of the white pine group. Pinus koraiensis plant produces pine nuts which is good for health. Many trees produce pine nuts but this one is the crucial one. The pine is native to eastern Asia: Manchuria (Ussuri River basin) in northeast China, Mongolia, Primorsky Krai and Khabarovsk Krai in the far east of Russia, Korea and Japan -Honshu southward from Tochigi Prefecture and northward from Gifu Prefecture, and Shikoku. In the north of its range, it grows at moderate elevations, typically 600 to 900 meters (2,000 to 3,000 feet), whereas further south, it is a mountain tree, growing at 2,000 to 2,600 m (6,600 to 8,500 ft.) elevation in Japan.

Cedar Pine, Chinese Pinenut, Hinggan Red Pine, Korean Cedar, Korean Pine, Korean Pinenut, White Pine, sea pine, Siberian yellow pine is some of the popular common names of the plant. Genus name comes from the Latin name for pines. Specific epithet means of Korea. This nut pine is a staple food in northern Asia. ). Pine nuts from this species are extensively distributed in business. Timber from this tree has a number of commercial uses including for furniture, bridges, telephone poles, railroad ties, boats, plywood and flooring, sports equipment, and musical instruments.

Korean Pine Facts

Name Korean pine
Scientific Name Pinus koraiensis
Native Eastern Asia: Manchuria (Ussuri River basin) in northeast China, Mongolia, Primorsky Krai and Khabarovsk Krai in the far east of Russia, Korea and Japan -Honshu southward from Tochigi Prefecture and northward from Gifu Prefecture, and Shikoku
Common Names Cedar Pine, Chinese Pinenut, Hinggan Red Pine, Korean Cedar, Korean Pine, Korean Pinenut, White Pine, sea pine, Siberian yellow pine
Name in Other Languages Arabic: Sanawbar kuriun (صنوبر كوري)
Bulgarian: Koreĭski kedrov bor (корейски кедров бор
Catalan : Pi De Corea
Chinese : Chao Xian Song (朝鲜松), Guo Song, Hai Song, Hai Sung, Han Song, Hong Guo Song, Hong Song (红松), Hung Song, xin luo song zi, Hai song (海 松), Guo song (果松),  Han song (韩松),  Hóngguǒ sōng (红果松), Chao xian song (朝鲜松 )
Czech : Borovice Korejská
Danish : Koreafyr
Dutch: Koreaanse pijn
Estonian : Korea Seedermänd
English: Chinese pinenut, Korean pine, Korean nut pine, sea pine, Siberian yellow pine,  white pine
Finnish : Koreansembra
French : Pin De Corée, pin de Koréa, pin de ore, Pin blanc de Corée
German : Korea-Kiefer
Hungarian : Koreai Fenyõ, Koreai cirbolya
Icelandic : Kóreufura
Italian : Pignoli, Pinoli, Pino coreano, Pino de Corea
Japanese: Chosenmatsu, Chosen-Goya, Chousen Goyou Matsu, Minimatsu, Chousen goyou (チョウセンゴヨウ),    Chousen goyou matsu (チョウセンゴ ヨウマツ ),  Chousen matsu (チョウセンマツ), Chiusengoyou (チウセンゴヨウ)
Komi: Korejaisʹ suspu (Кореяись суспу)
Korean : Channamu, Jatnamu, jasnamu (잣나무)
Mongolian: Solongos nars (Солонгос нарс)
Netherlands: Koreaanse Pijn 
Norwegian: Koreafuru
Persian : کاج کره‌ای
Polish : Sosna Koreańska
Portuguese: pinheiro-da-Coreia
Russian: Korejskij kedr (Корейский кедр), sosna korejskaya (Сосна корейская), koreyskiy kedr (корейский кедр), man’chzhurskiy kedr (маньчжурский кедр), sosna kedrovaya koreyskaya (сосна кедровая корейская)
Slovakian : Borovica Kórejská
Spanish : Pino De Corea, Piñón
Swedish : Koreansk Tall, Koreatall
Taiwan : Hai Song
Tatar: Кәрия эрбете
Turkish : Kore Çamı
Udmurt: Koreyays’ kedr (Кореяысь кедр)
Vietnamese: Thông Triều Tiên
Plant Growth Habit Tall, large, branched, pyramidal, monoecious, evergreen tree
Growing Climates Dry mountain slopes, especially those facing north
Soil Prefer growing in moist, sandy to sandy loam soil with adequate drainage in full sun. The plant grows well in both sandy and clay soils. Avoid poorly-drained wet soil
Plant Size 30 m (100 ft.) in height with a trunk up to 60 inches (150 cm) in diameter at breast height. Cultivated specimens may grow up to 15 m (50 ft.) tall
Branchlets Branchlets densely red-brown, occasionally yellow pubescent
Bark Bark is gray-brown and smooth when young becoming gray-black, scaly, and peeling on larger trees to reveal reddish inner bark
Winter Buds Winter buds reddish brown, oblong-ovoid, slightly resinous
Leaf Borne in fascicles of 5 at the end of a short shoot, 2.5 to 5 inches (6 – 13 cm) long and 0.06 inch (1 mm) wide, triangular in transverse section, dark green on outer face, with two inner faces that are whitish green with stomata
Flowering season May
Cone Shape & Size Solitary or several clustered near the ends of new shoots. They are ovoid or cylindrical-ovoid in shape, 3.5 to 4.5 inches (9 – 11 cm) long and 2 to 2.5 inches (5 – 6 cm) broad
Cone Color Green when young turning to brown as they mature
Seed Triangular obovoid, large, 12–16 mm long by 10 mm wide and 7 mm thick, with a hard seed coat covering a glossy yellowish kernel
Taste Extremely crunchy having a salty taste
Plant Parts Used Seeds, leaves, nuts, bark, and resin
Propagation By Seed, cultivars grafted
Season September

Plant Description

Korean pine is a tall, large, branched, pyramidal, monoecious, evergreen tree. In its native habitat and growing conditions it can reach 30 m (100 ft.) in height with a trunk up to 60 inches (150 cm) in diameter at breast height. Cultivated specimens may grow up to 15 m (50 ft.) tall. Plant is found growing in dry mountain slopes, especially those facing north direction. The plant prefers growing in moist, sandy to sandy loam soil with adequate drainage in full sun. The plant grows well in both sandy and clay soils. Avoid poorly-drained wet soil. When young, this tree typically grows in a narrow pyramidal form with ascending branching. With age, it relaxes into a loose pyramidal shape with a rounded crown and branching that is almost horizontal. Branching on mature trees usually extends to the ground. Bark is gray-brown and smooth when young becoming gray-black, scaly, and peeling on larger trees to reveal reddish inner bark. The branchlets are densely red-brown, occasionally yellow pubescent. Winter buds are reddish brown, oblong-ovoid and slightly resinous.

Leaves

Needles (Leaves) are borne in fascicles of 5 at the end of a short shoot, 2.5 to 5 inches (6 – 13 cm) long and 0.06 inch (1 mm) wide, triangular in transverse section, dark green on outer face, with two inner faces that are whitish green with stomata.

Cones

Pollen cones are ellipsoid in shape and develop crowded at base of new shoots. Seed cones are solitary or several clustered near the ends of new shoots in groups of 1 to 5. Cone lets are green in color and ovoid in shape. They develop on a short peduncle and are green in color ovoid or cylindrical-ovoid in shape, 3.5 to 4.5 inches (9 – 11 cm) long and 2 to 2.5 inches (5 – 6 cm) broad. Scales are woody, broadly rhomboid, about 2.5 cm long and wide, green on upper half, brown on lower half, apex with recurved spiny boss.

Seeds

Seeds are large, thickly, triangular obovoid in shape, wingless, 12–16 mm long, 10 mm wide and 7 mm thick, with a hard seed coat covering a glossy yellowish kernel. Trees start flowering from May, with cones maturing in October of the following year.

Traditional uses and benefits of Korean pine

  • Turpentine obtained from the resin of the trees is antiseptic, diuretic, rubefacient and vermifuge.
  • Externally it is a very beneficial in the treatment for a variety of skin complaints, wounds, sores, burns, boils etc. and is used in the form of liniment plasters, poultices, herbal steam baths and inhalers.
  • Stem bark is used for treating burns and skin ailments.
  • Seed consists of several medically active compounds and is analgesic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory.
  • It is a valuable remedy used internally in the treatment of kidney and bladder complaints and is used both internally and as a rub and steam bath in the treatment of rheumatic affections.
  • It is also very beneficial to the respiratory system and so is useful in treating diseases of the mucous membranes and respiratory complaints such as coughs, colds, influenza and TB.
  • People take Korean pine nut by mouth for earaches, nosebleeds, and to increase milk production during breastfeeding in Korea.
  • Korean pine nut oil is taken by mouth for weight loss.
  • People apply Korean pine stem bark or Korean pine tree resin as a plaster, poultice, or steam bath for burns, sores, boils, and other skin wounds.
  • Those suffering from skin problems are recommended by the doctors to have these nuts daily before their morning breakfast.
  • It is also beneficial for the respiratory system.

Culinary Uses

  • Shelled pine nuts have been eaten in Europe and Asia for a long time.
  • They are also a source of dietary fiber.
  • Pine nuts are frequently added to meat, fish, and vegetable dishes.
  • They constituted an essential ingredient of pesto sauce.
  • They are widely used in the cuisine of southwestern France, in dishes such as the salade landaise.
  • They are also used in chocolates and desserts such as baklava.
  • In New Mexico in the southwest United States, pine nut coffee a typically dark roast coffee having a deep, nutty flavor is a specialty and is made from roasted and lightly salted pine nuts.
  • Pine nuts are also a widely used ingredient in a diverse range of Middle Eastern cuisine, such as kibbeh, sambusek, ladies’ fingers and many other dishes.
  • In Korea, pine nuts are used for making rice biscuits and sweets.
  • Seeds can also be dried and ground into a powder then used as a flavoring and thickener in soups.
  • The green cones are used for making wine.
  • Seed can be consumed raw or cooked.
  • It has a soft texture with a hint of resin in the flavor; it makes a delicious snack and can also be used as a staple food.
  • A vanillin flavoring is obtained as a by-product of other resins that are released from the pulpwood.
  • These nuts are frequently added to the sweetmeat called pignoli. Pignoli cookies, an Italian confection is made of almond flour formed into dough and then topped with pine nuts.
  • Pine nuts are used in Middle Eastern cuisine as well.

Other Facts

  • Besides being cultivated for pine seed harvest, it is widely used in reforestation programs.
  • In Europe and North America it is planted as ornamental.
  • The timber is used for construction, carpentry, bridge building, vehicles, furniture, and wood pulp.
  • Seeds besides being edible and medicinal, are used as a source of soap and lubricating oil.
  • Turpentine is obtained from the timber and roots.
  • Turpentine has a wide range of uses including as a solvent for waxes etc., for making varnish and rosin the substance left after turpentine is removed is used by violinists on their bows.
  • The bark yields tannin; the trunk yields resin and gum.
  • A tan or green dye is obtained from the needles (leaves).
  • The resins are obtained by tapping the trunk, or by destructive distillation of the wood.
  • This is used by violinists on their bows and also in making sealing wax, varnish etc.
  • Pitch can also be obtained from the resin and is used for waterproofing, as a wood preservative etc.
  • The Korean pine is used as an ornamental tree.
  • It is used for a great variety of products, including telephone poles, railroad ties, bridges, boats, plywood and flooring, furniture, sports equipment, and musical instruments.
  • It is easy to break down into chips, particle board, or pulp for paper.
  • Korean pine starts producing large amounts of nuts when it reaches 100 years.
  • One tree could yield up to 20 kilos, which collectively comes to almost one ton of nuts per hectare of a Korean pine.

Precautions

  • The wood, sawdust and resins from various species of pine can cause dermatitis in sensitive people.
  • Korean pine nut oil might affect blood pressure control in people who have blood pressure that is too high or too low.
  • Korean pine nut might cause allergic reactions in some people. People who are sensitive to similar plants should avoid Korean pine nut.
  • Sometimes over consumption of these nuts can cause taste disturbances.

References:

https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=822554#null

https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxon/taxonomydetail?id=28463

https://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Pinus+koraiensis

https://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?taxonid=284965

https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/41633

https://gd.eppo.int/taxon/PIUKO

http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/kew-2561659

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinus_koraiensis

https://plants.usda.gov/home/plantProfile?symbol=PIKO2

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