Canadian or Eastern Hemlock
- Conifer, evergreen tree, 40-80 ft (12-25 m) tall, dense, conical crown when young, becoming ragged and
irregular with age, branches spreading horizontally from the trunk, dead branches persist. Leaves
(needles) in 2 ranks, flat, slightly tapered, 10-20 mm long, margin finely toothed, upper side glossy green,
whitish below with well defined stomatal lines; a few shorter needles (usually upside down) over the
stem. Seed cones ovoid, pointed, 12-20 mm long, purplish-brown, seed release in fall and winter,
spent cones remain on the tree into the next season.
- Sun or shade. Best in moist, well-drained, acid soils, but appears adaptable to calcareous
soils. Avoid windy, dry, and wet sites. Can be grown as a hedge. Suffers
from attack of aphid-like adelgids in some areas.
- Many selections, especially forms that are dwarf, pendulous, white tipped, or yellowish (golden).
One wholesale nursery lists almost 70 cultivars in its recent catalog.
- Hardy to USDA Zone 3b Native range from Nova Scotia to Minnesota and south
to the mountains of Alabama and Georgia.
- It is not always easy to distinguish T. canadensis from T. heterophylla on branchlet
characteristics alone. However, when comparing the lower side of the needles, T. canadensis
has well defined narrow bands and a distinct green margin, whereas T. heterophylla has ill
defined broad bands and an indistinct green margin. Additionally, the buds of T. canadensis
are ovoid and pointed, but those of T. heterophylla are globose.
- Portland, OR: Hoyt Arboretum
- Oregon State Univ. campus: on lower campus east of 11th St., on the north side of Madison Ave. near
intersection with the alley, about 20 ft from sidewalk