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Jepson Interchange (more information)
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  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from the Jepson eFlora.



James R. Griffin

Tree or shrub, monoecious, evergreen
Stem: young crown conic; twig not grooved, resinous, generally persistent
Leaves simple, generally alternate, sometimes in bundles or appearing ± 2-ranked, linear or awl-like; bases decurrent, sometimes woody, persistent several years
Pollen cone generally < 6 cm, not woody, deciduous
Seed cone generally woody; bracts, scales generally persistent; scale not peltate, fused to or free from subtending bract
Seeds 2, on upper side of scale base
Genera in family: 10 genera, 193 species: mostly n hemisphere; many of great commercial value, supplying > half of world's timber
Reference: [Price 1989 J Arnold Arbor 70:247–305]



Stem: young bark smooth, with resin blisters, mature bark generally thick, deeply furrowed; young branches appearing whorled; twig glabrous or hairy; leaf scars smooth, round, flush with surface; bud generally ± spheric, generally < 1 cm, ± resinous
Leaves 2–9 cm, sessile, twisted at base to become 2-ranked, often curved upward on upper twigs, generally ± flat; upper surface with 2 longitudinal, whitish bands, midrib sometimes depressed; lower surface with or without whitish bands, midrib sometimes ridge-like
Seed cone erect, < 23 cm, maturing 1st season; stalk generally 0; bracts, scales deciduous; bract included or exserted, free from scale; axis persistent on stem
Seed with obvious resin deposits on surface; wing < 2.5 cm
Chromosomes: 2n=24 for all reports
Species in genus: 39 species: n hemisphere
Etymology: (Latin: silver fir)
Reference: [Vasek 1985 Madroño 32:65–77]


A. concolor (Gordon & Glend.) Hildebr.


Stem: trunk < 61 m, < 2.7 m wide; mature crown rounded; young bark white-gray, old bark gray-brown to ± black, thick, deeply furrowed, with alternate dark and light layers; twig glabrous; bud resinous
Leaves ± 2-ranked on lower branches, twisted upward on higher branches, 3–9 cm, ± flat; upper surface without white bands; tip generally blunt or acute
Seed cone 7–13 cm; stalk < 5 mm; bract included
Ecology: Mixed-conifer to lower red-fir forest
Elevation: 900–3100 m.
Bioregional distribution: Klamath Ranges, North Coast Ranges, High Cascade Range, High Sierra Nevada, Tehachapi Mountain Area, Transverse Ranges, Peninsular Ranges, Modoc Plateau, n East of Sierra Nevada, Desert Mountains
Distribution outside California: to c Oregon, Idaho, Colorado, n Baja California
Most CA plants and some Rocky Mtn plants may be called var. lowiana (Gordon) Lemmon. Relationship of s CA plants (especially from DMtns) to generally Rocky Mtn var. concolor is under study
Horticultural information: DRN: 1, 4, 5, 6 &IRR: 2, 3, 7, 15, 16, 17, 24 &SHD: 10, 14, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23; CVS.

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