Tamarack Larch


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British Columbia Outdoor Wilderness Guide


TAMARACK LARCH
larix laricina

  • The Tamarack Larch is also known as Eastern Larch, Hackmatack, Alaska Larch, America Larch, Black Larch, Tamarack
  • 'laricina' is Latin for "larch-like"
  • 'tamarack' is from the Algonquin word 'akemantak' which means "wood used for snowshoes"

UNIQUE FEATURES:

  • like all larches, the Tamarack Larch has deciduous foliage (needles) but drops them in the fall like leaves

LOCATION:

  • Tamarack Larch grows mainly east of the Rockies
  • there are a few isolated groups in the Nechako Valley
  • Tamarack Larch can live on poorly drained soils - bogs and swamps - as well as on cool, moist, north-facing slopes

SIZE:

  • this small, slender tree rarely exceeds 15 metres in height

CONES:

  • seed cones: small, round, red at flowering, turning brown as they age
  • stay closed on the tree
  • pollen cones: yellow

Tamarack.Gif

NEEDLES:

  • 3 sided
  • blue-green and yellow in autumn
  • grow in clusters of 15 to 25

BARK:

  • red-brown, thin and scaly

WOOD CHARACTERISTICS:

  • Tamarack Larch wood is heavy, durable

USES:

  • modern - pulp, posts, poles, fuel
  • traditional - roots: sewing bark onto canoes; resin: relieve indigestion

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Tamarack Larch