Western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla)

East of Biology Map

Another of the familiar forest giants of the Pacific slope, the western hemlock is readily distinguished by the pendulous branchlet tips and broad flat rounded flexible needles. It is the largest member of its genus, growing 165–230 ft tall, and an important source of lumber and pulp in Oregon and Washington. It also provides high quality cellulose, from which is made rayon and cellophane. It grows rapidly and tolerates shade very well. The natural range of western hemlock extends from Alaska to northern California. It requires a moist, cool climate, hence is rarely cultivated successfully in other parts of North America.

There are many western hemlocks in and around Haskell Plaza. This one stands just outside the Biology Building main door.