Abies-fraseri-Valued for its use as a Christmas tree, Fraser fir is native to a small region in the southern Appalachians. North Carolina produces most of the Fraser firs used as Christmas trees and it adopted Fraser’s fir as the official Christmas tree of the state. The tree has much to offer as a Christmas tree; it has a pleasant scent, soft dark green needles with silver undersides, attractive shape, longevity after cutting, and strong branch tips capable of holding heavy ornaments.

Fraser fir is a pyramidal tree with rich brown colored bark that becomes pink-gray and covered with resin-blisters as it ages. The needles are in two distinct ranks at each side of the shoot and are ¾” long. The winter buds are dark chocolate brown and covered with resin. The cones are upright, 2¼” long, and dark purple with pale brown reflexed bracts between the scales.

Fraser fir 3Type: Evergreen tree

Outstanding Features: Shape, soft needles, strong branch tips, scent

Form: Pyramidal

Growth Rate: Slow

Bloom: Male and female stoboli appear on the same tree in spring

Size: 80’ H x 15-20’ W

Light: Full sun to part shade

Soil: Fertile, moist well drained, acidic; does not do well in clay soil

Hardiness: Zones 4-7

Care: Low maintenance

Pests and Diseases: Susceptible to the balsam woolly and Phytophthora root disease

Propagation” Seed (most common) cuttings, grafting.

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By Karen