The Q&A Archives: Types of Mugo Pines

Question: I would like to know names of several types of mugo pines; one I saw was a globe shape and very compact.

Answer: Many of the mugo pines (Pinus mugo) we see for sale are grown from seed and so will show some variation. Culture can also play a role in that a certain amount of compactness can be induced by breaking off the growth tips in the spring. However, there are different types. Some you might see are "var. mugo", a low growing species under 8 feet tall and twice as wide; "var. pumilio, a prostrate form; "Compacta", a very dense and rounded form, "Gnom", a very short and dark green form, and "Mops" a very dwarf form. A good nursery should be able to identify and describe the ultimate size and shape of the various mugo pines they carry.

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