subalpine fir Pinaceae Abies
lasiocarpa (Hook.) Nutt.
|Leaf: Flattened needles, usually about 1 inch long, thickened in the middle, bluish white bloom on all surfaces; tips mostly rounded, but may be notched (or pointed near top of tree); spirally arranged but uniformly upswept; commonly have a manicured appearance.
Flower: Species is monoecious; male cones bluish and borne beneath the leaves; female cones purple and borne upright near the top of the crown.
Fruit: Cones are 2 to 4 inches long, cylindrical, slender, and borne upright on the twig (frequently in clusters); cone scales are deciduous, falling from the cone as seeds ripen; purple when mature.
Twig: Stiff, orange-brown, and covered with round, flat leaf scars when needles fall. Buds are small, rounded, and covered with pitch; terminal buds usually occur in clusters of three or more.
Bark: When young, grayish green and covered with resin blisters; later turning gray to white, unbroken except near base of large trees. Resin pockets scattered throughout inner bark.
Form: When mature 40 to 100 feet tall and 1 to 2 feet in diameter. Very narrow crown of dense foliage; often spire-like with branches to the ground.
Looks like: Pacific silver fir
- grand fir
- California red fir
- noble fir
| Additional Range Information:
Abies lasiocarpa is native to North America.
Range may be expanded by planting.
See states reporting subalpine fir.
| External Links:
Silvics of North America
USDA Plants Database
|© Copyright 2016, Virginia Tech|
Dept. of Forest Resources
and Environmental Conservation,
all rights reserved.
Photos and text by: John Seiler,
Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera,
and John Peterson