Closeup of needles and cones on Western Hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla). One of the Pacific Northwest native trees available at Sparrowhawk Native Plants Nursery in Portland, Oregon.
Closeup of needles on Western Hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla). One of the Pacific Northwest native trees available at Sparrowhawk Native Plants Nursery in Portland, Oregon.
Full height of mature Western Hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla). One of the Pacific Northwest native trees available at Sparrowhawk Native Plants Nursery in Portland, Oregon.

Western Hemlock

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Tsuga heterophylla

  • Size at maturity: 120-200' tall, 30-40' wide
  • Canopy layer: large tree
  • Light requirements: full sun to full shade
  • Moisture requirements: dry to moist soil
  • Growth rate: fast
  • Special features: evergreen, medicinal, wildlife favorite

The Western Hemlock is commonly found in the lower elevations below 3000’ west of the Cascades. Young trees have attractive feathery foliage and the tip of the central leader often droops. The needles are short and vary in size from 1/4” to 3/4”, with a white band on the underside. The light brown, papery cones are only about 1” long and may be produced in great quantities. (Portland Plant List, 2016)

Photo Credit 1: "Tsuga heterophylla (Western Hemlock)" by S. Rae is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Photo Credit 2: "Tsuga heterophylla" by gertjanvannoord is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Photo Credit 3: "Hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla)" by Holy Outlaw is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0