When to see
Scots pines are evergreen trees and so do not shed all their needles (leaves) in winter. Scots pine are also coniferous (cone-bearing) and on a warm dry day in early summer a pine forest becomes quite noisy as the mature pinecones burst open with a crack and hundreds of seeds are flicked into the air to drift away on the wind.
Each seed is equipped with a wing and rotates as it descends. These seeds start to germinate afterrain. Meanwhile the pines are active producing yellow pollen from male flowers found on the shoot base that is blown by the wind onto the female flowers on the shoot tips. Fertilised flowers start forming green cones, these can be up to 25mm long by July provide food for red squirrels and other forest inhabitants.
During the summer, the tree continually sheds some needles and grows new ones. The old fallen needles are used for nest building by wood ants.