Distinctive Perennials

Ornamental Grasses


Wreaths & Gifts




type of tree

Fraser Fir

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Species Name

Fraser Fir (Abies Fraseri)

Seed Source

Mount Rogers, North Carolina, USA


Potentially hardier than traditional Roan Mountain source due to higher elevation (6,000 feet or higher). Very uniform quality, blue-green colour with typical growth rate and density.


Moderately well-drained to well-drained sandy loams are best. Poor tolerance of heavy weed competition when young.


Needles 0.5 to 1 inch long, shiny green above and silvery white below. Good conical form, but taper is often narrow in keeping with current trends for both landscape and Christmas trees. Growth rate similar to Balsam Fir






Best on cool, north- or east-facing slopes.


Fraser fir (Abies fraseri) is also called southern balsam fir and she-balsam, is a small- to medium-size tree. It is the only fir endemic to the southern Appalachian Mountains. The largest tree on record measures almost 86 cm (34 in) in diameter, 26.5 m (87 ft) tall, and has a crown spread of 15.8 m (52 ft). Because of the high elevation at which Fraser fir grows, its primary value is for watershed protection and scenic attraction.

Fraser fir has a disjunct distribution, restricted to high elevations in the southern Appalachian Mountains of southwestern Virginia, western North Carolina, and eastern Tennessee. Fraser fir grows in a cold, moist climate characterized as a cool-temperate (microthermal) rain forest with a well-distributed mean annual precipitation of 1900 to 2540 mm (75 to 100 in). There is considerable variation in color, depth, and organic matter content in the soils that support Fraser fir in its natural environment. Because of its thick green foliage, beautiful shape, fragrance, and needles that are retained unusually well, Fraser fir is unequaled as a Christmas tree. It is also used widely as an ornamental yard tree. Fraser fir has shown some susceptibility to deer browsing.

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