Trees to 45 m tall; trunk to 1.2 m d.b.h. in native range; bark orange-brown, with coarse, oblong, scaly plates; crown rounded; branches spreading-descending, upcurved at tips; branchlets orange-brown, aging darker brown, stout, rough; winter buds silvery white, ovoid, 3-4 cm, scales fringed at margin. Needles spreading-recurved, (2 or)3 per bundle, yellow-green, slightly twisted, 20-45 cm × ca. 1.5 mm, stomatal lines present on all surfaces, base with persistent sheath 2-2.5(-3) cm, margin finely serrulate. Seed cones solitary or paired toward branchlets tips, sessile or rarely shortly pedunculate, dark brown, ovoid-cylindric when open, 15-25 cm, maturing in 2 years, then quickly shedding seeds and falling. Apophyses dull, nearly rhombic, slightly thickened and raised, strongly cross keeled; umbo broadly triangular, with a short, stiff, reflexed prickle. Seeds pale brown, mottled darker, truncate-obovoid, ca. 1 cm; wing 3-4 cm.
Trees to 47m; trunk to 1.2m diam., straight; crown rounded. Bark orange-brown, with coarse, rectangular, scaly plates. Branches spreading-descending, upcurved at tips; twigs stout (to 2cm thick), orange-brown, aging darker brown, rough. Buds ovoid, silvery white, 3--4cm; scales narrow, margins fringed. Leaves (2)--3 per fascicle, spreading-recurved, persisting 2 years, 20--45cm ´ ca. 1.5mm, slightly twisted, lustrous yellow-green, all surfaces with fine stomatal lines, margins finely serrulate, apex abruptly acute to acuminate; sheath 2--2.5(--3)cm, base persistent. Pollen cones cylindric, 30--80mm, purplish. Seed cones maturing in 2 years, quickly shedding seeds and falling, solitary or paired toward branchlet tips, symmetric, lanceoloid before opening, ovoid-cylindric when open, 15--25cm, dull brown, sessile (rarely short-stalked); apophyses dull, slightly thickened, slightly raised, nearly rhombic, strongly cross-keeled; umbo central, broadly triangular, with short, stiff, reflexed prickle. Seeds truncate-obovoid; body ca. 10mm, pale brown, mottled darker; wing 30--40mm. 2 n =24.
"Tall tree, to 30 m; bark becoming orange-brown, with rough, scaly plates; twigs very stout; winter buds large, to 2.5 cm, covered with silvery-white, fringed scales; lvs in 3’s, closely crowded at the ends of the branches, persistent 2 years, light green, soft, often drooping, 20–30(–50) cm; cones divergent, often pendent, conic-oblong, 15–25 x 5–6 cm, opening at maturity and soon falling; apophysis thick and prominently ridged, the umbo elevated, with a small, reflexed spine; seeds ca 4 cm. Moist or dry, sandy soil, largely on the coastal plain, less commonly on the piedmont; se. Va. to Fla. and Tex. (P. australis F. Michx., an illegitimate substitute name)"