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Silver Fir Tree

Silver Fir TreeThe Silver Fir (A. venusta, K. Koch.) has leaves almost willow-like in form, so broad are the flat, pointed blades. They are 1 to 2 1/2 inches long, yellow-green with silvery linings, especially bright on the newest shoots. The spray is flat by reason of the 2-ranked arrangement of the leaves, which stand out at right angles to the twig. The tree habit is peculiar. A slender trunk 100 to 150 feet high bears a broad pyramid of pendulous limbs, which is surmounted by a narrow spire for the last 20 feet of the tree's height. The cones are 3 to 4 inches long, and striking in ornamentation. The long, stiff whip of a pale yellowish brown bract extends an inch or two beyond each purple scale.

This fir is confined to elevated canon sides in the mountains of Monterey County, California, and has no commercial significance. Seeds sent to Europe produce handsome ornamental trees in North Italy and in warmer sections of England.