What Is The State Tree of Oregon?
Douglas fir is the State Tree of Oregon. Pseudotsuga menziesii is the scientific name of Douglas fir and it is commonly known as Red-fir, Oregon-pine, Douglas-spruce, Coast Douglas fir and pi in the Spanish language. Pseudotsuga is the genus of the Douglas fir and P. menziesii is its species. Oregon’s State tree Douglas fir belongs from the family of Pinaceae. As an evergreen conifer the Douglas fir is native to western North America from west-central British Columbia, Canada southward to central California, United States. The range of Douglas fir in the state of Oregon and Washington is incessant from the Cascades crest west to the Pacific Coast Ranges and the Pacific Ocean.
In California, it is found in the Klamath and California Coast Ranges as far south as the Santa Lucia Mountains with a little plunk as far south as the Purisima Hills, Santa Barbara County. In the Sierra Nevada, it ranges as far south as the Yosemite region. When a state bodies select a symbol for the state it should be represented extraordinary design, quality, availability, expression, and usefulness, cultural, traditional and religious background, which go back thousands of years or its popularities basis of the facts that stated above, the state General Assembly of Oregon designated the Douglas fir as the official state tree of Oregon in 1939.
Facts about Oregon’s State Tree (Douglas fir)
- Common name: Red-fir, Oregon-pine, Douglas-spruce, Coast Douglas fir and pi in the Spanish language
- Genus: Pseudotsuga
- Species: Pseudotsuga menziesii,
It is native to western North America from west-central British Columbia, Canada southward to central California, United States. The range of Douglas fir in the state of Oregon and Washington is incessant from the Cascades crest west to the Pacific Coast Ranges and the Pacific Ocean. In California, it is found in the Klamath and California Coast Ranges as far south as the Santa Lucia Mountains with a little plunk as far south as the Purisima Hills, Santa Barbara County. In the Sierra Nevada, it ranges as far south as the Yosemite region.
- Flower: The Douglas fir trees have produces both male and female flower in the same tree. The male’s flowers are a rectangle, red to yellow, generating to near the branch tips and females are reddish in color with long bracts, occurring also to the branch tips.
- Bark: The bark of the Douglas fir trees is thin, smooth, gray, and contains copious resin blisters when it is juvenile, it turns to thick and corky when it became matured. The shoots are brown to olive-green, turning to gray-brown with the maturity, smooth but as shoots, and finely pubescent with short dark hairs.
- Leaf: The leaves are spirally arranged but slightly twisted at the base to lie in flattish either side of the shoot. It is evergreen, single needles, which is lack woody pegs or suction cups. The needles are yellow-green to blue-green in color, 2–3.5 cm (3⁄4–1 3⁄8 in) long. The coast Douglas-fir foliage has a noticeable sweet fruity-resinous scent, especially when it crashed.
- Fruits: The fruits of Douglas fir called ‘cone’, it is very distinctive. 3 to 4 inches long with rounded scales. Three-lobed bracts extend beyond the cone scales and resemble mouse posteriors. The mature female seed cones are pendent, 5–8 cm long, 2–3 cm wide when closed, opening to 4 cm wide. The seeds are 5–6 mm long and 3–4 mm wide, with a 12–15 mm wing. The male (pollen) cones are 2–3 cm long, dispersing yellow pollen in spring.
- Purpose: Ornamental.
- Symbolism: Honesty, dedication, fairness, friendship, long and healthy life, the power of determination and perseverance, reverence and respect.
Oregon’s state tree the Douglas fir is the second-tallest conifer in the world (after coast redwood), and the third-tallest of all trees, (after Eucalyptus regnans).Currently, coast Douglas-fir trees 60–75 meters or more in height and 1.5–2 meters in diameter are common in old growth stands and maximum heights of 100–120 meters and diameters up to 4.5–5.5 meters been documented. The Douglas fir trees plant grows well in sandy, loam, or clay with fertile, wet or moist, well-drained soil. It prefers partial to full sun. It tolerates drought, is opaque and has more climbing branches.
The bark of the Douglas fir trees is a resource of tannins. It contains pitch, it burns a lot of heat and almost no smoke, so it is high-quality as a fuel. It also can be used as a substitute for cork and is also used as potential raw materials of fertilizer. The resin that obtained from the trunk is similar to Abies balsamea, which can be used in the manufacture of glues, candles, as strengthening for microscopes and slides, also as an adhesive in soaps and perfumery. The Douglas fir woods are heavy, strong, fine-grained, and durable, however, it can be of capricious quality. It is used for heavy construction, telegraph poles, furniture etc. The Douglas-fir tree is an attractive Christmas tree because the needles do not easily fall off. Its dense growth makes it a beautiful evergreen when the tree is being young.
Douglas fir was regularly working medicinally by various native North American Indian tribes who used it to treat a multiplicity of complaints. It is also used in modern herbals. An antiseptic resin is acquired from the trunk and used as a poultice to treat cuts, burns, wounds and other skin ailments. The poultice is also used to treat injured or dislocated bones. The concoction of the green bark has been used as the remedy of excessive menstruation, bleeding bowels and stomach problems. The leaves concoctions have been used as a wash and a sweat bath for rheumatic and paralyzed joints.
To sum up, Douglas fir is the people’s favorite State Tree of Oregon, which symbolized Honesty, dedication, fairness, friendship, long and healthy life, the power of determination and perseverance, reverence and respect. Although it is an official State tree symbol of Oregon, it outstandingly represents and glorifies the spirit of Oregon culture.