Hierarchical nanostructures of lead sulfide nanowires resembling pine trees were synthesized by chemical vapor deposition. Structural characterization revealed a screwlike dislocation in the nanowire trunks with helically rotating epitaxial branch nanowires. It is suggested that the screw component of an axial dislocation provides the self-perpetuating steps to enable one-dimensional crystal growth, in contrast to mechanisms that require metal catalysts. The rotating trunks and branches are the consequence of the Eshelby twist of screw dislocations with a dislocation Burgers vector along the <110> directions having an estimated magnitude of 6 ± 2 angstroms for the screw component. The results confirm the Eshelby theory of dislocations, and the proposed nanowire growth mechanism could be general to many materials.