Western Hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla)
Category: Evergreen Trees
Western Hemlock scientific name is Tsuga heterophylla
Western Hemlock is an evergreen coniferous tree that belongs to the Tsuga genus of the Pinaceae family. The scientific name of the tree is Tsuga heterophylla and it is a native to the west coastline of North America, with its northwestern boundary on the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska, and its southeastern boundary in the northern part of the Sonoma County in California. Western Hemlock is an integral element of the forests of the Pacific Northwest, western side of the Coast Ranges, where it is a peak variety. It is as well, a vital timber tree all through the region, together with several of its huge coniferous associates. Western Hemlock is the official state tree of the Washington State.
Western Hemlock is a big-size evergreen coniferous tree, which is capable of growing to a maximum height, ranging from 165 feet to 230 feet (50 m to 70 m), remarkably 273.42 feet (83.33 m). The maximum diameter of the trunk of the tree is 9 feet (2.7 m). Western Hemlock is the biggest variety of hemlock, with a slender, furrowed, brown colored bark.
The top of the Western Hemlock assumes a conical shape when fully grown. The top of the young trees is an extremely neat wide conic shape, with a powerfully relaxed lead shoot. Old Western Hemlock trees may not have branches in the lowest 100 feet to 130 feet (30 m to 40 m). The tree is readily notable by the pendulous branched tips at all ages.
The shoots of the Western Hemlock tree are extremely pale buff-tan, approximately white, with light pubescence with a length of 1 mm. The leaves of the tree assume the shape of a needle, with the length that ranges from 0.2 inches to 0.9 inches (5 mm to 23 mm) and a breadth between 0.06 inches and 0.08 inches (1.5 mm and 2 mm). The leaves are powerfully crushed in cross-section, with a thinly notched margin and a bluntly sharp apex. The upper part of the leaves are dark green in color, whereas their underside has two distinguishing white stomata bands, with only a fine green color midrib between the bands. The leaves are set spirally on the shoots, but they are twisted at the bottom to lie in two positions on both sides of the shoot.
The cones of the Western Hemlock are little, pendulous, slim cylindrical in shape, with the length ranging from 0.56 inches to 1.2 inches (14–30 mm) and a breadth between 0.28 inches and 0.32 inches (7 mm and 8 mm) when closed, and 0.72 inches and 1 inch (18 mm and 25 mm) when opened. They contain 15 to 25 slim, supple scales that vary in length between 0.28 inches and 0.52 inches (7 mm and 13 mm). The young cones appear in green color, and their color will turn gray to brown when matured after 5 to 7 months subsequent to pollination.
The seeds of the Western Hemlock tree are brown in color, with the length between 0.08 inches and 0.12 inches (2 mm and 3 mm), with a slim, pale tan wing of length between 0.28 inches and 0.36 inches (7 mm and 9 mm).
The Western Hemlock is developed as a decorative tree in backyards in its local habitats and along the Pacific Coast of the United States, where its best consistency is observed in wetter areas. In fairly arid regions, such as at Victoria in British Columbia, the tree is challenging about the conditions of the soil. The tree requires a high echelon of organic matter, in a damp, acidic soil. It is as well, cultured in temperate regions all over the world.