The TreeThe size of the trees vary somewhat according to location, but usually they grow to a height of about 30.0m with a diameter of 1.0m and are free from branches for about 15.0m to 21.0m.
The TimberThe wood closely resembles American pitch pine; the heartwood is reddish-brown, the depth of colour varying with the amount of resin present and the sapwood, which is 50mm to 75mm wide, is pale yellowish-brown. The wood is coarse in texture with a more or less pronounced resinous odour, and the grain is typically straight. Growth zones of dark tissue produce conspicuous bands on all surfaces.
DryingPitch pine air-dries rather slowly with a tendency for end splitting in thick stock to occur. It also kiln dries slowly, and care is needed to avoid checking, splitting and distortion.
StrengthCaribbean pitch pine is a hard, dense, resinous timber of high strength properties resembling those of the densest grade of American pitch pine when dried, but some 15 per cent more resistant to shock loads and to splitting, and about 45 per cent harder.
Working QualitiesGood - The wood is easy to work with either hand or machine tools, comparing closely with American pitch pine in resistance to cutting and cleanness of finish. Its dulling effect on cutting edges is not severe unless prolonged runs are made with cutters or teeth clogged with resin. Resin also adheres to machine tables and fences causing difficulty in ease and steadiness of feeding if the resin is not occasionally removed.
Latin NamePinus caribaea
Also known asPitch pine (UK), Longleaf pitch pine (UK)
TreatabilityModerately easy, Easy (Sapwood)
OriginBahamas, Cuba, Belize, guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua