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Douglas, yellow or red spruce
Tincture made from the fresh shoots with leaves.
Plantae; Spermatophyta, Gymnospermae; Coniferopsida - Conifers; Coniferales; Pinaceae - Pine Family
Description of the substance
Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) is not a true fir at all, nor a pine or spruce. It is 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. The species is known by a number of common names including Oregon Pine, British Columbian Pine, Red Fir and even Douglas tree; however, the U.S. Forest Service settled on Douglas Fir some years ago. Douglas Fir is North America's most plentiful softwood species, accounting for one fifth of the continent's total softwood reserves.
True firs belong to the genus Abies, but the Douglas-fir has its own genus Pseudotsuga.
The Douglas fir is one of the dominant evergreen trees in North America. It grows upwards of 300 feet (100 metres) and some are over 1300 years old.
Douglas fir is a large straight-trunked tree,
Its leaves are linear, up to 3 cm long, rounded, blunt at the tip, green above with two white bands beneath, aromatic, arranged all around the shoot. The bark is purple brown, thick with red-brown fissures. The male flowers are yellow beneath the shoot, females are green flushed with pink at the tip, in separate clusters on the same plant, in the spring.
The fruit is a red-brown hanging cone, 10 cm long, with three pointed bracts projecting from between the scales: Unlike the cones of true firs, those of Douglas-fir hang downward and have distinctive 3-pointed, papery bracts extending out from the scales. Some call these "mouse-tails" but they are more like the two hind feet and the tail. Immature cones are a beautiful deep purple color. Cones persist throughout the winter.