A large tree up to 90 ft high in the wild; young shoots brown, glabrous; winter-buds cylindrical, tapered at the top, clothed with fringed, awl-shaped, pointed resinous scales. Leaves normally in threes (sometimes in fours or fives), 5 to 8 in. long, exceedingly finely toothed, sharply pointed, falling away in their third year; basal sheath 1⁄2 in. or less long, persistent. Cones produced singly or in pairs, elongated-ovoid, 11⁄2 to 21⁄2 in. long, 3⁄4 to 13⁄8 in. wide, brown.
Native of Mexico, where it is widespread. Hartweg sent home seeds in 1839 which were distributed by the Horticultural Society. Most of the plants raised from them died, but there were two trees at Bicton in Devon, one of which measured something over 60 ft in height and 7 ft in girth in 1920; both must have died before 1931, since there is no mention of them in the Conference Returns of that year. It is now very rare.