Monday, January 20, 2014

3rd in a Series: 2014 Tree Seedling Sale - Douglas Fir ( Pseudotsuga menziesii )

Douglas Fir is not native to Ohio, but it is planted as Christmas trees and also as an ornamental in lawns that can accommodate its large size. The lumber is used for structural applications that are required to withstand high loads. It is used extensively in the construction industry.  It is also prized as a Christmas tree that holds its bluegreen needles especially well after cutting.

Douglas Fir is native to much of Canada, and the Pacific northwest and the Rockies. Mature specimens found in the open may grow to 100 feet tall or more. The bark on young trees is thin, smooth, gray, and covered with resin blisters. On mature trees, it is moderately thick, furrowed and corky.  A tree will begin to produce cones at 12-15 years of age.  The seeds in the cones are eaten by squirrels and many species of birds.  As a member of the Pine Family, it is related to other Firs, as well as to the Larches, Spruces, Pines, and Hemlocks.

Planting Requirements- Although not native to Ohio, Douglas Fir achieves reasonable growth in sites that assist its summer survival, as does general shelter from the drying winds of summer. As with any evergreen, it may be used as a screen or windbreak. It grows in full sun to partial sun, and strongly prefers areas with cool summers and cold winters.

Potential Problems- Firs are generally disease- and pest-free once established, as long as they are sited in relatively cool summer climates.

The Douglas Fir is one of 8 tree seedlings which will be offered in the 2014 Tree Sale held by the district.  Other seedlings include White Pine, Sawtooth oak, American chestnut, Butternut, Red Maple, Tulip Poplar, and Black Alder. Also available this year are 2 varieties of apples; Nova Spy and Goldrush. The district will also offer 2 varieties of blueberry; Aurora, and Blue Ray.  New this year is a cover crop mix for gardeners.  And as usual, the district has high quality all cedar birdfeeders and houses for sale.  For more information and to receive an order blank, please call 740-432-5624.

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