Douglas-fir

* This is the first of what will be a monthly feature on the native trees, shrubs, and groundcover plants of the Puget Sound region.

Needles

Pseudotsuga menziesii

These are some of our biggest trees in this region and can get to be 210’ tall. Look for a tall evergreen in the canopy with thick, rough, “fluted” bark. You can’t mistake the characteristic 2-4”-long “mousetail” seed cones – the story is that when there was a fire in the forest, the mouse climbed up into the cones of the Douglas-fir to safety, and their hind feet and tails dangled down from the scales. Flat scales have two white lines on their undersides. These are not true Firs (which are in the genus Abies), but are actually in a separate genus called Pseudotsuga.

View the Douglas-fir native plant ID card by WNPS

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One thought on “Douglas-fir

  1. These are not the largest species in the world, but the vigor and wide range of this tree is quite remarkable. Definitely a tree that paints the mountains of this region with green growth.

    Even in the redwoods, these Douglas fir can grow among the tall giants.

    I’m pleased that our new home has a pretty nice Douglas fir, which we plan to keep.

    MDV / Oregon

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