Great Basin bristlecone pines are restricted to the mountain ranges of California, Nevada and Utah and have a remarkable ability to survive in this extremely harsh and challenging environment. They grow extremely slowly, and are some of the oldest living organisms in the world. With some aged at almost 5,000 years these amazing trees can reveal information about Earth's climate variations. Amazingly, the leaves, or needles, can remain green for over 45 years.
Did you know?
At 5,000 years old the great basin bristlecone pines of North America are some of the oldest living organisms in the world.
Scientific name: Pinus longaeva
The world's oldest trees have survived 5,000 years of harsh conditions.
Living above 3,000 metres in North America, the giant bristlecone pine is the oldest single living organism known, with individuals dating back 5,000 years. They cope with freezing temperatures and battering winds by only growing for six weeks of the year.
The Great Basin bristlecone pine can be found in a number of locations including: North America. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.
The following habitats are found across the Great Basin bristlecone pine distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.
Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use them.
Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web
Year assessed: 1998
Classified by: IUCN 2.3
Pinus longaeva, the Great Basin Bristlecone Pine, is a long-living species of tree found in the higher mountains of the southwest United States. The species is one of three closely related trees known as bristlecone pines and is sometimes known as the Intermountain or Western bristlecone pine. One member of this species, at 5062 years (as of 2012), is the oldest known living non-clonal organism on Earth.
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