A very tall, spire-like evergreen in the wild, the Pacific silver fir remains much shorter and more pyramidal in form when grown in gardens. Native to the panhandle of Alaska southward to Victoria Island and western Oregon's Cascade range, this fir prospers where summers are moist and cool and winters cold and snowy. The bark is light gray and smooth but with age, the trunk displays plates floating on an underbark of reddish brown.
New branch shoots emerge at right angles in opposite pairs, initially covered in beige hairs. The needles occur densely on branch tips, angled slightly forward and the flattened needles curl upward slightly like eyelashes on sun-basked branches. Needle undersides are silvery white. Male cones are reddish to golden red, contrasting the upright female cones that are larger and cylindrical. Mature seed cones are purplish gray then finally brown, often with globs of resin.
Young Pacific silver firs look like upright narrow pyramids and over decades become tall and flat-topped with remaining branches looking like tiers. Grow it in deep, fertile, acidic soils that are evenly moist but well-drained. Organic matter improves growth as well as keeps the soil shaded and cool during summer. Full sun to partial shade locations are fine. This fir is a coastal forest tree and may be used as a specimen in a park or garden or as a windbreak. Interestingly, Pacific silver fir trees readily retain needles for 20 years, and up to 50 years before shedding some foliage isn't uncommon. (info source: Learn2Grow.com)
Genus - Abies
Species - Amabilis
Common name - Pacific Silver Fir
Pre-Treatment - Required
Hardiness zones - 6 - 8
Height - 20'-100' / 6 - 30(45) m
Spread - 12'-20' / 4 - 6 m
Plant type - Large Tree
Vegetation type - Evergreen
Exposure - Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade
Growth rate - Medium
Soil PH - Acidic, Neutral
Soil type - Loam, Well drained
Water requirements - Average Water
Landscape uses - Feature Plant, Screening / Wind Break
Leaf / Flower color - Dark Green / --
A short period of cold and moist stratification (in the fridge) needed.
1. Soak the seeds in clean water for 24 hours. Fully drain away all of the water and place the seeds in a zip-lock freezer bag. Place the seeds in the fridge. Make sure the seeds during this period not dry out or are waterlogged otherwise the pre-treatment will be ineffective.
2. After 6-8 weeks of teh pretreatment seeds are ready to be sown.
3. Sow in a good quality potting compost. It shoudl be sterile and clean, never used before. Firm the compost gently, water and sow the seeds on the surface. Cover the seeds lightly (~2 mm) of vermiculite or sieved compost. Keep moist and at room temperature.
4. Germination will begin in a few weeks.
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