Common Name: Douglas-fir, Doug-fir
Pseudotsuga menziesii is one of the iconic trees of our BC coastal forests. It is named after the Scottish naturalists David Douglas and Archibald Menzies (pronounced MING iss). It is not a true fir! This is why the common name often has a hyphen, to distinguish it from real firs. More information.
They are not true firs because they are not of the genus Abies. Douglas-firs can grow 20 to 100m tall and are used for building because of the quality of the lumber. The bark of these trees is incredibly thick acting as fire protection. If you can find a cone on the ground see if you can spot the three-pointed bracts that protrude prominently above each scale. It resembles the back half of a mouse, with two feet and a tail hanging out and the head tucked up under the scale.
UBC Forestry Professor Suzanne Simard has researched this tree's mycorrhizal networks.
Photo of Doug-firs on Great Lawn with stump from lightning-struck tree by Samantha Sivertz.
Photo of foliage by Midge Oke