Pines are sun-loving trees that do not grow well under shady conditions.
Before the 19th century, pines were often referred to as firs. In some European languages, Germanic cognates of the Old Norse name are still in use for pines.
The bark of most pines is thick and scaly and the seeds are commonly eaten by birds.
Pines grow well in acid soils, some also on calcareous soils; most require good soil drainage, preferring sandy soils,