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Branch with needles


Clumps of needles


Branch with cones


 

Larix laricina

Common Name: Larch Tree, Tamarack
Family: Pinacea


Description: This is a deciduous conifer with a pyramidal shape.
Leaves:
These three sided one inch needles are bluish green in color. They are found in tight cluster of 15-20 per a spur. Before falling off they turn yellow. 
Seeds: 
There are different male and female cones. The female cones which produce the seeds are reddish brown with scales. They are erect and borne on short spurs.
Trunk/Branches: The trunk on average is 2 feet in diameter. It is has reddish-brown bark with round scales. The horizontal branches are slightly drooping with short spurs.
Height:
 50-70 feet
Conditions/Habitat/Kind of Forest: Commonly found in bogs and swamps. They are tolerant of acidic soils and found in sunny areas.
Known Wildlife Interactions: The inner bark, twigs and needles are food for deer and red squirrels. The branches also serve a nesting places for birds.
Range:  This conifers extensive range includes Canada northward to the northern limits of trees. Then south through Minnesota, Wisconsin and Ohio. It then goes as far south as Maryland. This tree can also be found in the interior part of Alaska.
Conservation Status-US/ World Wide: Not threatened in the U.S. or globally.
Uses (Human): The hard wood is used in building ships because it is heavy and durable in water. The bark contains tannin. Resin extracted from a hole in the tree can be used for treating indigestion and other stomach ailments.

References:

The Pennsylvania Flora Project.  Botany Department, Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania.  Accessed:  January 20, 2006. <http://www.paflora.org >

UConn Plant Database. University of Connecticut. 2001. Accessed March 2, 2006. <http://www.hort.uconn.edu/Plants/l/larlar/larlar1.html

Native Conifers of North America. Nearctica: The Natural World of North America. 2000. Accessed March 2, 2006.  <http://www.nearctica.com/trees/conifer/tsuga/Llaric.htm

Plants for a Future.  June 2004.  Accessed: January 20, 2006. http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Larix+laricina

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species <http://www.iucnredlist.org>

Redington, Charles B. Plants in Wetlands. Redington Field Guides.1994. pg. 61

Chadde, Steve W. A Great Lakes Wetland Flora. Pocketflora Press. 2002. pg. 77

This page was created by: A Coiro, Muhlenberg College
Photos by: L. Rosenberg, edited by N. Smith
Last updated 04/25/06