Douglas Fir


The Douglas Fir is a striking and graceful medium to a fast-growing evergreen tree native to North America. It is pyramidal in shape and produces a heady scent in warm weather. It is a very popular ornamental and as a living Christmas Tree. Requires full to partial sun, and is moderately drought resistant with a medium water requirement.

Douglas Fir

Pseudotsuga menziesii (var. menziesii), Coastal Douglas Fir.

*This species produces some of the world’s tallest trees. Under optimal conditions, specimens have grown to over 90 metres at maturity. Consider where you plant this tree, as it may become enormous over time. Plant far enough away from structures, well-travelled pathways and driveways, powerlines, and underground pipes.

The Douglas Fir, also known as Oregon Pine, is a medium-sized to the very tall evergreen green tree containing six species and six recognised varieties and sub-species with a geographical distribution across East Asia and Western North America. It is an essential commercial tree grown widely across Europe and New Zealand, where it has naturalised and become a weed of concern.

Sequoia Valley Farms stocks two varieties of Douglas Fir, both native to western North America. The Coastal Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. menziesii) is native to Yukon, Canada, down through Washington and Oregon into Northern California. It is the tallest of all Douglas Fir species and grows in pure stands and mixed Pine, Fir, and Redwood forests.

The Rocky Mountain Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca) is found following the interior Rocky Mountains, stretching from Central British Columbia and Southern Alberta down through Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Texas, and northern Mexico. The Rocky Mountain Douglas Fir is a smaller tree compared to its coastal cousin, grows in various environmental conditions and elevations, and tolerates the drier conditions and climatic extremes seen in the American interior.

 The Douglas Fir is not a true fir, spruce, pine, or hemlock but rather a distinct species distantly related to Larches (Larix) and Cathaya (Cathaya argyrophylla), which has only one extant species in its genus. Douglas Firs became a distinct species approximately 70 million years ago, splitting from their closely related cousins about 130 million years ago.

The Douglas Firs prefer acidic or neutral well-draining soils and display the ability to adapt to various sites and conditions, often forming deep taproots in drier locations.

Coastal Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. menziesii)

The Coastal Douglas Fir is a fast-growing evergreen tree, often growing 60cm per annum under optimal conditions. This tree can reach heights of 30 or 40 metres in a yard within 50 years. In nature, this tree can reach heights of 100 metres in old-growth forest settings and rival the Coastal Redwood in height and trunk dimensions. Therefore, it is recommended that Coastal Douglas Firs are planted in areas that will allow them to reach heights of 40 metres or more, with a spread of 6 to 10 metres.

Coastal Douglas Firs require adequate moisture year-round, with the occasional fog or mist with increased humidity. If planting in an area that experiences drier summers, irrigation and mulching are necessary to sustain peak conditions.

The Coastal Douglas Fir can tolerate full sun or partial shade, preferably in an area with at least 4 hours of direct sun per day. The Coastal Douglas Fir can tolerate mild to severe frost and can grow in Australian climate zones 8 to 5 successfully, as long as adequate rainfall exceeds 600mm per annum. It is somewhat drought tolerant but will require sufficient moisture during some of Australia’s harsher and drier drought conditions.

This variety is very popular as a living Christmas Tree due to its pyramidal shape and heavenly scent. Having medicinal properties, it is long used by the Indigenous peoples of North America to treat inflammation, and vitamin C deficiency, fight colds and increase energy.

Injured by high winds, it is best planted in sheltered gullies and not as a windbreak. It is often planted in groups or clusters as a feature or singularly as a stately ornamental.


Please get in touch with us if you have any questions regarding any item you see in our catalogue, as we want to help you buy the correct item for your needs.

Find out more about Coastal Douglas Firs and the conservation efforts underway to protect this species by visiting the Pacific Forest Trust.


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