Red Pine (Pinus resinosa)

Red Pine (Pinus resinosa)

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Common Name(s): Red Pine, Norway Pine

Scientific Name: Pinus resinosa

Distribution: Northeastern North America

Tree Size: 65-100 ft (20-30 m) tall, 2-3 ft (.6-1 m) trunk diameter

Average Dried Weight: 34 lbs/ft3 (545 kg/m3)

Specific Gravity (Basic, 12% MC): .41, .55

Janka Hardness: 560 lbf (2,490 N)

Modulus of Rupture: 11,000 lbf/in2 (75.9 MPa)

Elastic Modulus: 1,630,000 lbf/in2 (11.24 GPa)

Crushing Strength: 6,070 lbf/in2 (41.9 MPa)

Shrinkage: Radial: 3.8%, Tangential: 7.2%, Volumetric: 11.3%, T/R Ratio: 1.9

Color/Appearance: Heartwood is light reddish brown, sapwood is pale yellow to nearly white.

Grain/Texture: Grain is straight, with a medium, even texture and a somewhat oily feel.

Endgrain: Medium sized resin canals, numerous and evenly distributed, mostly solitary; earlywood to latewood transition fairly abrupt, color contrast medium; tracheid diameter medium-large.

Rot Resistance: Heartwood is rated as moderately durable to non-durable regarding decay resistance. Red Pine is readily treated with preservatives and can thereafter be used in exterior applications such as posts or utility poles.

Workability: Red Pine is easy to work with both hand and machine tools. Glues and finishes well, though excess resin can sometimes cause problems with its paint-holding ability.

Odor: Red Pine has a distinct, resinous odor when being worked.

Allergies/Toxicity: Working with pine has been reported to cause allergic skin reactions and/or asthma-like symptoms in some people. See the articles Wood Allergies and Toxicity and Wood Dust Safety for more information.

Pricing/Availability: Red Pine is sometimes mixed with various species of spruce, pine, and fir and is stamped with the lumber abbreviation “SPF.” In this form, Red Pine should be widely available as construction lumber for a modest price.

Sustainability: This wood species is not listed in the CITES Appendices, and is reported by the IUCN as being a species of least concern.

Common Uses: Utility poles, posts, railroad ties, paper (pulpwood), and construction lumber.

Comments: So called because of the tree’s reddish-brown bark. Red Pine is the state tree of Minnesota.

The alternate common name of “Norway Pine” is somewhat mystifying, as the tree did not originate from Norway, and there’s no clear link with Norway. Some believe the name comes from early American explorers who confused the tree with Norway Spruce (Picea abies).

Related Species:

Related Articles:


Red Pine (Pinus resinosa)

Red Pine (sanded)

Red Pine (sealed)

Red Pine (sealed)

Red Pine (endgrain)

Red Pine (endgrain)

Red Pine (endgrain 10x)

Red Pine (endgrain 10x)


  1. Pat russell October 15, 2016 at 2:24 pm - Reply

    It says use red pine for post in the ground ? With treatment? Huh!!!
    Any redish colored pine may be (like douglus fir) which is very hard. For flooring we cut fat timbers end grain and glued down.

  2. Eric June 20, 2013 at 11:32 am - Reply

    The only reference I could find was that sometimes Rimu (not included on this website) is sometimes called “Red Pine,” though the name is used very loosely. It’s from New Zealand, so they have their own naming schemes of certain woods which resemble northern-hemisphere woods.
    If I were you, I’d just use southern yellow pine. I don’t know much about the flooring industry, but in construction, you can’t really specify a particular species, you just buy southern yellow pine (SYP) and you get one of a handful of closely related species.

  3. sal June 19, 2013 at 12:04 pm - Reply

    Hi, I am confused in reading the above. You list red pine with a janka rating of 560. But when I first looked up red pine on a janka chart it shows as 1630 (see link to chart but I am sure you already have it So now I found your site. What lead me here was an ad for yellow heart pine claiming it was the hardest of all the pines at 860 or so. When I emailed the vendor and presented what I found he told me that the red pine listed on janka was either South American or African red pine, which is no longer imported. One other vendor told me that Northern red pine is hard than oak (@ 1240 on the chart) because it has more pitch which crystalizes and creates the hardness. I googled, I binged, I ASK’ed, I yahoo’d but I could find no reference to SA or African red pine. I am building a log home, my wife wants pine foors and based on that I want the hardest pine I can find. I can cut wood, hammer it, shape it and generally make it look wonderful, but I am not a student of forestry. Can you add any insight

    • Palaswood February 17, 2014 at 6:53 am - Reply

      im no expert, but these pictures match the super hard pine 2x4s in my garage. i salvaged about 8 of them off a crate, and another 2×6 of the exact same stuff off another shipping container (now wish i taken it all). This stuff is incredibly hard. Hardest pine i’ve seen by far. Would make wonderful and beautiful floors. I personally really like it

      • Josh February 27, 2014 at 10:48 am - Reply

        If it’s very hard you might have some yellow pine.

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