Disclosure: We may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
Norfolk Island pine trees, while not actually proper pine trees, are popular trees for both indoor and outdoor areas. Knowing how big your plants will grow can be difficult sometimes. Do you have a Norfolk Island pine you want to plant or bring into your home but don't know how big it will end up getting? We have done plenty of research to find you the answer.
Norfolk Island pines can reach heights of over 200 feet in their natural habitat. If your tree grows indoors, it can still get to about 20 feet tall, so this is not a small plant. That said, Norfolk Island pines are slow-growing, so you won't see extreme heights for a while.
As we begin, we will cover all things Norfolk Island pine and discuss how to grow them. Whether you currently have one in your garden or want one, knowing how big your pine will get is essential. With that said, let's dive right into this post!
Where Do Norfolk Island Pines Grow?
Generally, you will find Norfolk Island pines growing in warmer, wetter climates with moderate average temperatures. These evergreen trees are native to the South Pacific and popular house plants due to their low-maintenance lifestyle.
Typically, you are okay to grow a Norfolk pine outdoors as long as you live in USDA zones ten through 11 and don't have harsh winters. Although these trees are synonymous with the holiday season, they don't like cold weather and can't survive freezing temperatures.
How Tall Will A Norfolk Island Pine Get?
Most times, you can expect an outdoor Norfolk pine to be anywhere from 100 to over 200 feet tall. According to Pennington, Norfolk Island pines can also get to around 60 feet wide once fully mature, so make sure to give your tree enough space.
Furthermore, these stunning pines can reach almost double this size on their native island, just off the coast of Australia.
Are Norfolk Island Pines Easy To Care For?
Norfolk pines are very easy to care for. One of the reasons many people choose this tree as a houseplant is because it requires very little attention, which is perfect for those with a busy schedule.
Another bonus to this tree is that pests rarely bother it, which is always helpful. So, as long as your Norfolk pine gets plenty of light and you keep it watered, you shouldn't run into any issues.
Where Is The Best Place To Plant A Norfolk Pine?
For those planting a Norfolk pine, make sure it is somewhere that gets plenty of light but not too much direct sun. Ideally, your pine should be in an open space that gets partial shade during peak hours of the day but remains bright.
That said, you also want to make sure your Norfolk pine isn't too close to your home, so you don't end up with a tree in your living room. Like we mentioned, these trees do grow tall and wide, so giving them plenty of room is important.
American Plant Exchange Norfolk Island Pine
This live Norfolk pine will come in a three-gallon container, measures 36-38 inches tall, and usually ships within a week.
How Do You Keep A Norfolk Pine Small?
To keep your Norfolk Island pine small, start with a mid-size container. Especially for anyone growing their tree indoors, you want to make sure your pine's roots can't develop enough to sustain a massive tree.
Generally, regular pruning and minimal repotting is the best way to keep your pine small, although we also recommend cutting the top of your tree to keep it a preferred height. Norfolk Island pines will only grow huge if you let them, so it is vital to trim yours down regularly to keep it small.
HC Classic Slate Blue Planter
This blue pot is 24 inches, durable plastic material, has a pre-drilled drain hole, and comes in various colors/sizes.
Do Norfolk Pines Have Deep Roots?
Although they reach impressive heights, Norfolk pines have very shallow root systems. Norfolk pines often topple over in high winds, so planting them in a protected location is important.
Norfolk Island pine's roots are also not considered invasive and are known to become weak as they age. That said, as long as you live somewhere that doesn't get extreme winds and plant your tree somewhere with protection, you shouldn't have this problem.
How Fast Do Norfolk Island Pines Grow?
In general, Norfolk pines are very slow-growing trees. On average, they only grow about two feet per year, usually taking over 15 years to reach a mature size.
Of course, every tree will grow at a different speed, but don't expect to see more than 24 inches of growth in a year.
How Can I Make My Norfolk Pine Grow Faster?
There are a couple of ways to get things moving for those wanting to speed up their Norfolk pine's growth. First, we recommend regularly fertilizing your tree with a balanced (20-20-20) liquid fertilizer to give it a boost of nutrients/energy.
Another good way to improve your Norfolk pine's growth is to move it somewhere that gets better light, like a patio or porch. Especially for indoor trees, you want to make sure it gets as much sun as possible to grow healthy and strong.
EZ-gro 20 20 20 Fertilizer
This liquid fertilizer is nutrient-rich, has ammonium and urea nitrogen, and comes with a measuring cup.
Do Norfolk Pines Need Sun?
Norfolk pines prefer bright light and warm conditions. As we covered earlier, Norfolk pines don't like too much direct sun but need plenty of light to grow.
That said, if you have your tree in the shade or indoors, it will be fine as long as it gets plenty of indirect sunlight. Norfolk Island pines that don't get enough sun tend to be leggy and less healthy than those that do, which is something to keep in mind.
Can Norfolk Pine Survive Low Light?
Following our previous point, Norfolk pines can survive low light but won't grow as well as those in brighter conditions. Generally, as long as your pine is in a sunny spot, it won't need direct sunlight, which is perfect for indoor growers.
On top of that, you can always use an indoor plant light on younger Norfolk pines or move yours outside if the weather is good.
Otdair Grow Light With Timer
This indoor plant light extends to 60 inches, has a tripod design, uses 48 LED lights, and has four timer settings.
Should You Trim A Norfolk Pine?
Generally, Norfolk pine doesn't require cosmetic pruning, although this is a good idea for indoor trees. Most times, Norfolk pines only need trimming if they have dead branches, so try to keep it minimal.
That said, if you want to keep your Norfolk pine small, regular shaping/pruning is an easy way to ensure your tree doesn't get too big. Material-wise, all you need to trim your pine is a sharp pair of gardening shears and some protective gloves.
Extendable Anvil Loppers Tree Trimmer
This pair of tree trimmers can cut through two-inch branches, has a steel blade, adjusts from 27-40 inches, and comes with a satisfaction guarantee.
Can You Cut Off The Top Of A Norfolk Pine?
When it comes to cutting off the top of a Norfolk pine, this is something you can try. Although opinions vary, cutting off the top of a Norfolk pine will control its height but might stunt your tree.
According to Toronto Master Gardeners, cutting off the top of a Norfolk Island pine can destroy its natural symmetry and control its height/size. So although this shouldn't be your first step to controlling your tree's size, we think it is OK to try if all else fails.
To Wrap Things Up
Whether you have a Norfolk Island pine or want to plant one, knowing how big it will get is essential. A Norfolk pine can get up to 200 feet tall outdoors, while indoor trees can reach 20 feet.
When it comes to their growth rate, Norfolk pines are slow growers, usually growing two feet per year. Location-wise, we recommend planting your Norfolk Island pine somewhere that gets plenty of light but not too much direct sun. Regardless of where your tree is, remember to give it enough space, and don't be afraid to fertilize it every so often.
Want more info about pine trees? Check out these helpful garden posts below!