Abies balsamea Pinaceae
Balsam Fir A-bez bal-SA-me-a
- Conifer, evergreen, stiff, slender, conical at apex, 50-80 ft (15-25 m) high. Needles directed
forward and upward, 15-25 mm long, apex rounded or lightly notched, deep green above, 2 white stomatal
bands below (each with 5-6 lines), strong balsam fragrance when crushed. Cones erect, small, 5-9 cm
long, eventually very resinous, they break up in early fall and release seed; the bare cone axis may remain
on the tree for several years.
- Sun or partial shade. Best in well-drained, acid, moist soil.
- Hardy to USDA Zone 3 Has the widest range of any Abies in North America, from Labrador to
Alberta (the only fir native to eastern Canada) and south to Pennsylvania.
- balsamea: balsam producing, the bark.
- Portland, Oregon: Hoyt Arboretum.