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Abies balsamea var. phanerolepis is often confused with:
Abies balsamea Row of trees (Steuben County, NY)-Late Summer
Abies fraseri Abies fraseri tree
Native alternative(s) for Abies balsamea var. phanerolepis:
Abies fraseri Abies fraseri tree
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Ilex x attenuata 'East Palatka' Ilex x attenuata 'East Palatka' Form
Viola canadensis Viola canadensis
Trillium luteum Flowers with mottled bracts

Abies balsamea var. phanerolepis

Previously known as:

  • Abies balsamea subsp. phanerolepis
  • Abies intermedia
Description

Canaan fir is a needled evergreen tree in the Pinaceae (pine) family found in the high elevation mountains of West Virginia, Virginia, and the northern most eastern states into Canada.  The common name Cannan comes from the Canaan Valley which is located northeast of Elkins, WV.  It is similar to Fraser and balsam firs with in both appearance and growth rate. 

Plant in the full sun to partial shade. Canaan fir tolerates wet soils better than other firs though it prefers moist, well-drained sandy loam acidic soils. It grows to a mature heigh of 55 feet and width of 25 feet so be sure to have enough room for this needled evergreen.  While Canaan fir does not tolerate urban pollution well its buds break later than Fraser or balsam fir so it is less susceptible to frost damage. 

This handsome formal densely branched conical tree with short dark blue green needles makes an ideal accent plant, small grouping, screening or it can be used as a Christmas tree.  Use it in a rain garden, near a lawn, or in a naturalized area, meadow or woodland area.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  

More information on Abies balsamea.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#rain garden#blue green needles#fragrant leaves#accent plant#lawn tree#needled evergreen#frost tolerant#mountains#acidic soils tolerant#screening#naturalized area#small group plantings#Christmas trees#meadows#woodland garden#urban conditions intolerant
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#rain garden#blue green needles#fragrant leaves#accent plant#lawn tree#needled evergreen#frost tolerant#mountains#acidic soils tolerant#screening#naturalized area#small group plantings#Christmas trees#meadows#woodland garden#urban conditions intolerant
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Abies
    Species:
    balsamea
    Family:
    Pinaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Appalachian Mountains
    Distribution:
    ME , NH , VA , VT , WV
    Dimensions:
    Height: 40 ft. 0 in. - 55 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 20 ft. 0 in. - 25 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Columnar
    Dense
    Pyramidal
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Wet
    Available Space To Plant:
    12-24 feet
    24-60 feet
    NC Region:
    Mountains
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3b, 3a, 4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gray/Silver
    Purple/Lavender
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Description:
    Violet cones turn gray-brown when mature
  • Flowers:
    Flower Description:
    no flowers
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Blue
    Gray/Silver
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Soft
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Needles
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    3/4"-1" long flat soft needles dark green above and silvery blue white somatic bands on the underside. The needles are highly fragrant.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Gray
    Bark Description:
    Smooth gray bark
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Lawn
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Rain Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Screen/Privacy
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Songbirds