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Christmas Tree Abies procera

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
AY-beez PRO-ker-uh
Description

Noble fir is an evergreen conifer in the Pinaceae (pine) family. It is native to the Cascade Range and Coastal Range mountains of extreme northwest California, western Oregon and Washington state from 3000-5000 ft.  It has upswept branches with blue-green needles having stomal bands on both surfaces. The name “procera” means “tall.” 

This tree does well in windy and sunny conditions in well-drained moist loamy soils. It is best grown within its native range of the Pacific NW.

Noble fir is used as a Christmas tree and in construction. At one time it was used to build airplanes due to the lightness of the wood and its ability to be bent. Its root system makes it wind tolerant.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems: No major losses from pests. Noble fir bark beetle (Pseudohylesinus nobilis) is often associated with root-diseased trees and can kill the tree. Dwarf mistletoe may be a problem requiring management action in some areas

VIDEO created by Ryan Contreras for “Landscape Plant Materials I:  Deciduous Hardwoods and Conifers or Landscape Plant Materials II:  Spring Flowering Trees and Shrubs” a plant identification course offered by the Department of Horticulture at Oregon State University

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Glauca'
    Blue cones
'Glauca'
Tags:
#full sun tolerant#conifer#wind tolerant#blue-green leaves#showy cones#evergreen tree#Christmas trees#landscape plant sleuths course
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Glauca'
    Blue cones
'Glauca'
Tags:
#full sun tolerant#conifer#wind tolerant#blue-green leaves#showy cones#evergreen tree#Christmas trees#landscape plant sleuths course
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Abies
    Species:
    procera
    Family:
    Pinaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Used as a Christmas tree. The wood has been used to build airplanes. It is used in papermaking and construction
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Western U.S.A.
    Distribution:
    CA, OR, WA
    Wildlife Value:
    Provides cover and thermal protection for wildlife. Mammals eat the twigs and cones.
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Cover/Habitat
    Wildlife Food Source
    Dimensions:
    Height: 130 ft. 0 in. - 230 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 8 ft. 0 in. - 12 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Pyramidal
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    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)
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    6-feet-12 feet
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5b, 5a, 6b, 6a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Length:
    > 3 inches
    Fruit Width:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    The cones are 4-8 inches, erect on the stem with purple scales that are nearly hidden by the green bract scales. Ripens to brown and disintegrates to release winged seeds in the fall.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Description:
    No flowers
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Blue
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Leaf Type:
    Needles
    Simple
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Crenate
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    The 1 inch or less needles are glaucous blue-green above and below with strong stomal bands, and a blunt to notched tip. They are arranged spirally on the shoot and slightly twisted to be curved above the shoot. The attachment is J-shaped.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Dark Gray
    Red/Burgundy
    Surface/Attachment:
    Fissured
    Bark Description:
    Young trees have smooth gray bark with resin blisters that becomes red-brown, rough and fissured as the tree ages,
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Bud Terminal:
    Cluster of terminal buds
    Stem Surface:
    Hairy (pubescent)
    Stem Description:
    The twigs are reddish-brown with fine pubescent for several years. Covered with round, flat leaf scars when needles fall; buds small, rounded, brown and mostly non-resinous. End buds in clusters of 3 or more.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Naturalized Area
    Slope/Bank
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Attracts:
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds