Tamarack
Larix laricina

Location in Ontario
Tamarack trees grow throughout Ontario. It is found on wet or moist sites.


Tamarack, Norfolk County
 

Genus Larix
This genus includes Larches and Tamaracks, all of which are deciduous conifers which means they lose their needles in the winter. Needles are flexible and found in tufts. Pollen cones are globular and yellow. Seed cones are small and red, green or yellow. All are tall, slender trees. Tamarack is the only species of Larix that grows in Southern Ontario.
 
In the Landscape
Tamarack is a medium sized tree, growing up to 25 metres and having an average life of 150 years. It makes an unusual lawn specimen since its needles turn bright yellow in the fall and are shed. 

TREE FACT:
Tamarack is also known as Larch. Although it is a coniferous tree, it is also deciduous, which means it loses its needles in the fall.


Tamarack, University of Guelph Arboretum

Leaves
This coniferous tree has leaves which are flattened needles found in tufts of 15 to 60. Needles are shed in the fall, making Tamarack a deciduous coniferous tree, after turning a brilliant yellow.
Bark
The bark is reddish-brown and scaly. It contains tannin which was used for tanning leather, but today, artificially produced tannin is used.
Cones
The seeds are in cones. Immature cones can be pink, red or yellowish-green. Mature cones are light brown and open in August. Seeds are shed in the fall. Cones are produced every 3 to 6 years after 15 years of growth.

Wood
The wood is strong and durable.
Specific gravity: 0.53
Janka Hardness: 590 lb
Wood Comparison Chart
The wood is used for bridges, foundations and boats. It is also used for pulpwood.


Fall colours of Tamarack, Norfolk County

Link to United States Forest Service Silvics Manual for Tamarack.

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