Christmas Hills Tree farm is committed to producing the very best quality trees in the industry. Although we specialize in Noble fir, we have many other varieties available. Located in the mountains of Southwest Washington, we offer a wide variety of superb fir to Christmas Tree wholesalers.
According to the U.S. Forest Service website, Noble fir (Abies procera), also known as red fir and white fir, is an impressive true fir limited to the Cascade Range and Coast Ranges of the Pacific Northwest.
At maturity, it typically has a clean, columnar bole and short, rounded crown. Noble fir attains the largest dimensions of any of the true fir species.
A high-altitude tree, the Noble fir is a highly popular Christmas tree. It’s known for its “keepability.” Noble fir are as popular in the West as Fraser fir is in the East. It’s also become very popular in the Midwestern states.
The wood from this beautiful tree is used for general structural purposes and paper manufacture. For more info on this spectacular, long-lasting Christmas tree, click here.
Here are a few photos of our elegant Noble fir, showing not only their beauty, but how we carefully and professionally harvest and ready them for shipping. The top photo shows John Burton with some of his Noble fir. The last two photos were taken in early June 2008, and show Noble fir with new growth.
Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), says Western Wood Products Association, isn’t a true fir at all, nor a pine or spruce.
It’s a distinct species named after Archibald Menzies, a Scottish physician and naturalist who first discovered the tree on Vancouver Island in 1791, and David Douglas, the Scottish botanist who later identified the tree in the Pacific Northwest in 1826.
Through the years, this beautiful tree has had many names, including Oregon Pine, British Columbian Pine, Red Fir and Douglastree.
Happily, the U.S. Forest Service settled on Douglas Fir some years ago.
“Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii),” says San Francisco State University, “ranks as the second tallest tree species in the world behind coastal redwood (Sequoia sempervirens), and contains the largest trees in the entire Pinaceae family. The tallest known Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) is the Brummit Fir (located in Coos County, Oregon), which reaches the height 328 feet.”
Fraser fir (Abies fraseri), was named for John Fraser, a Scottish botanist who explored the southern Appalachian Mountains in the late 18th century. Fraser fir also called southern balsam fir and she-balsam, is a small- to medium-size tree.
Fraser fir is the only fir endemic to the southern Appalachian Mountains. Its soft and brittle wood is sometimes used for pulpwood, light frame construction, interior knotty paneling, and crates.
Fraser fir boughs have often been used for “pine pillows” and bed stuffing, says the National Christmas Tree Association.
Fraser Fir is widely used as a Christmas tree. Its fragrance, appearance, strong twigs, and ability to retain its soft needles for a long time when cut (which do not prick easily when hanging ornaments) make it an excellent choice for this purpose.
Call or write us today to learn more about how you can obtain a shipment of Christmas Hills Tree Farm’s fine, strong Fraser fir.
Grand Fir or Giant Fir (Abies grandis) is a fir native to the Pacific Northwest of North America. It is a large evergreen coniferous tree growing to 300 feet tall.
It is easily distinguished from other Pacific Northwest fir, says the National Christmas Tree Association, by its sprays of lustrous needles in two distinct rows. They are usually horizontally spread so that both the upper and lower sides of the branches are clearly visible.
The name Abies is derived from the Latin abeo meaning “to rise” and refers to the great height attained by some species. Fir is derived from the Old English furh or fyrh or the Danish fyrr, meaning “fire,” from its use as firewood.
The Grand fir, also called lowland white fir, balsam fir, or yellow fir, is a rapid-growing tree that reaches its largest size in the rain forest of the Olympic Peninsula of Washington. One tree in that area measures 78.9 inches (231 ft) tall, and has a crown spread of 14 m (46 ft). The species also has historic significance. The famous Barlow Road snub-trees on the south side of Mount Hood in Oregon were grand firs. They were used by early settlers to control the rate of descent of their covered wagons on a particularly steep slope in their trek from east to west. Some of the rope-burned trees are still standing after 150 years.
The Okanagan people built canoes from grand fir bark and rubbed its pitch on paddles to give them a good finish. They also applied pitch to the back of bows to provide a secure grip.
Nordmann fir is one of the most important species grown for Christmas trees. Nordmann Fir (Abies nordmanniana) is a fir native to the mountains south and east of the Black Sea, in Turkey, Georgia, Russian Caucasus, and northern parts of Armenia.
The Nordmann fir is favored by many because of its attractive foliage, with needles that are not sharp, and that do not drop readily when the tree dries out.
The leaf of the Nordmann fir has flattened needles, which are shiny and very dark green above and silvery blue below. They’re blunt or notched at the end, and clustered and dense on the upper surface of the twig.
Nordmann Fir, says the University of Kentucky Agriculture Department, is a spectacular plant; the best fir species for Kentucky landscapes.
Plants typically grow at a moderate rate to 60-80′ tall and 30′-40′ wide.
This stately tree is also a popular ornamental tree in parks and large gardens. Its wood is soft and white, and is used for general construction, paper, etc.
Burton Blue Noble Fir
Burton Blue is a distinctive, grafted Noble fir. Each spring, we graft several thousand seedlings. Through the use of our special seed orchard and through grafting, we achieve the unique blue color of Burton Blue. The blue color is a natural variation of the Noble fir.
This year, because of the “Go green” popularity, we came up with the slogan, “Go Blue: Burton Blue!” While Burton Blue Noble Fir comprise a small part of the total fresh Christmas trees we offer, they are spectacular, and it’s fun to have the family name for such a stunning tree.
The Burton Blue Noble fir dates back to the time when John’s father, Charley Burton, began grafting them. Charley owned and operated Bear Canyon Farm, and Charley was the inspiration for all of the Burton siblings, at different times in their lives, to initiate their own high-quality tree farms.
Charley Burton, who grew his first Noble fir in 1949, was well known in the Christmas Tree wholesale industry for his excellence in growing Noble fir and three of John’s siblings continue this tradition.
Christmas Hills Tree Farm has a limited amount of the Burton Blue Noble fir available for sale, however we do try to include a small amount in each regular shipment at no additional cost.
In December, 2004, we had the honor of sending one of our grafted Burton Blue Noble fir to the White House. It resided in the Blue Room of the White House.
Components for successfully growing Burton Blue Noble fir
What makes the Burton Blue Noble fir so distinctive? There are several contributing factors:
- Our careful, skilled grafting.
- Our elevation.
- Our rainfall. Mossyrock’s average is around 50″ per year, and also contributes to our superior quality Burton Blue Noble fir.
Mossyrock is the perfect location for weather, rainfall, moderate temperature, 1000′ elevation, and latitude (center of natural environment). It is perhaps slightly better than Oregon because there is more rain, less drought in the summer months, more moderate temperature, and it is farther north. In addition, the trees are dormant when cut. This results in fresher, more vivid coloring, superb “keepability” and quality.
In addition to Christmas Hills Tree Farm’s #1 Grade, some #2’s are available at a reduced price, and we also have the economical Field-Run grade.