Tsuga heterophylla, plug
Description: Western hemlock is a large evergreen tree growing from ninety to two-hundred feet high. The needles are short stalked, flat, finely toothed, irregularly spare, and of unequal length (five to twenty millimeters long). The seed cones are ovoid, short-stalked, brown, with many thin papery scales, stalkless, and hanging down at the end
of the twigs.
Adaptation: Western hemlock occurs on a variety of soil types. This species is well adapted to grow on humus and decaying wood, and is also found on mineral soil. This species is very shade tolerant and thrives in full sun and regenerates well under a closed canopy. Western hemlock grows in pure stands or mixed at lower levels with Douglas-fir, silver and grand firs, giant arborvitae, redwood, and hardwood and at higher elevations with noble fir, Alaska cedar, mountain hemlock, western, white, and lodgepole pines.
Landscaping & Wildlife: Tsuga heterophylla is occasionally planted as an ornamental tree in northern states and in Western Europe. Western hemlock stands provide cover and habitat for many wildlife species and small mammals. It is also used for nest trees by cavity nesting birds. This species is browsed by elk and deer. The seedlings are eaten by snowshoe hares and rabbits.
Agroforestry: Western hemlock is used in forested riparian buffers to help reduce stream bank erosion, protect aquatic environments, enhance wildlife, and increase biodiversity.