Singleleaf pinyon (piñon) pine trees grow on many mountain ranges throughout Nevada between 5,000 – 9,000 feet in elevation. The Great Basin bristlecone pine grows at generally higher altitudes from 7,500 feet to mountain summits. Both species are unique, but share being designated by the Nevada Legislature as official Nevada State Trees.

The Singleleaf pinyon was adopted as such in 1959. To this day it is an integral part of Nevada Native peoples’ foodways because of its edible pine nuts. The Great Basin bristlecone was added as a state tree in 1987. This species has some of the longest living individuals of any tree species. In 2012, a Great Basin bristlecone in the Sierra Nevada of California was discovered to be 5,065 years old. At present, this tree is the oldest know individual, non-clonal tree in the world.

Despite the museum being closed to the public, the Nevada State Museum staff will be creating videos of our Curator’s Corner presentations. On Wednesday, December 9th we will post the short video presentation, by Mina Stafford, Curator of Education, about pine trees. Check it out on our YouTube channel.

Singleleaf pinyon pine tree

Great Basin Bristlecone pine tree