Balsam fir is one of our most prolific conifers. It accounts for one quarter of our merchantable wood. The spruce budworm feeds on its needles and devastates wide swaths of the coniferous forest.
Balsam fir prefers moderately well-drained soil, but adapts to a variety of sites.
It forms pure stands but often associates with spruce, white birch and trembling aspen. Its hardiness and good shade-tolerance enable it to grow in the understory and quickly dominate a site after a disturbance.
Almost white, balsam wood is light, soft and not very strong.
Widely used in the pulp and paper and construction industries, it is also a favourite Christmas tree.
Needles, single and flat.
Fruits, erect, often resinous cones.