Alphabetical Plant Listing

Pseudotsuga menziesii (Douglas Fir)

Douglas Fir, Blue Douglas Fir, Green Douglas Fir, Oregon Pine


Tall and airy, Pseudotsuga menziesii (Douglas Fir) is a magnificent evergreen tree of pyramidal habit with drooping lower branches and ascending upper branches in youth. With age, the tree becomes irregularly conical as it drops its lower limbs. The flat, spirally-arranged, deep green or blue-green needles, 1.5 in. long (4 cm), are adorned with two white bands on their undersides. They are fragrant when bruised. Douglas Fir produces an abundance of pendant, ovoid, brown cones, 4 in. long (10 cm), with unique, conspicuous forked bracts extending beyond the cone scales. Ever-present, they hang from the tree like Christmas ornaments. The bark is brown-gray and smooth in youth, becoming reddish-brown, thick, and deeply furrowed with age. Native to western North America, Douglas Fir grows at a slow rate, about 12 in. per year (30 cm). It is prized as an important timber tree in Western North America and is one of the most commonly marketed Christmas tree species in the United States. Douglas Fir is excellent as a specimen, in groupings, or as a screen.

  • Grows up to 40-80 ft. tall (12-24 m) and 10-20 ft. wide (3-6 m).
  • A full sun lover, this plant is easily grown in slightly acidic, moisture-retentivewell-drained soils. Intolerant of poor soils, dry soils, poorly drained soils, exposed sites or drought.
  • Low maintenance, it requires little pruning. Remove competing leaders on young trees.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • Propagate by seed sown fresh in containers in a cold frame in late winter. Douglas fir does not take well to propagation by cuttings.
  • Native to western North America, from British Columbia to California, Mexico.
  • Find where this species is invasive in the United States.

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Requirements

Hardiness 5 – 7
Heat Zones 5 – 7
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, A2, A3
Plant Type Conifers, Trees
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 40' – 80' (12m – 24m)
Spread 10' – 20' (3m – 6m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Moisture Retentive
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Evergreen, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, California, Midwest, Minnesota, Northeast, New York, Pacific Northwest, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Rocky Mountains, Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, Southwest, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Hedges and Screens
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow

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By Milan Summer, Steve Estvanik, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 5 – 7
Heat Zones 5 – 7
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, A2, A3
Plant Type Conifers, Trees
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 40' – 80' (12m – 24m)
Spread 10' – 20' (3m – 6m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Moisture Retentive
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Evergreen, Fruit & Berries
Native Plants United States, California, Midwest, Minnesota, Northeast, New York, Pacific Northwest, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Rocky Mountains, Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, Southwest, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Hedges and Screens
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow

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