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The European Larch tree, Larix decidua, is a deciduous (i.e. non-evergreen) conifer. A good specimen tree, European larch looks lovely in very early spring, when the first new leaves and bright little pink-red female cones appear at the same time. The needles are richly scented and turn rusty orange in the autumn. Mature trees produce large numbers of miniature cones with seeds that feed several bird species. The old cones stay firmly on the braches for several years, which is handy for making Christmas wreaths.
You can also buy Hybrid Larch and Japanese Larch from our nursery to give some wild looking variety to a group of trees.
Growing Larch Trees
Wet sites or chalky soil are not suitable. Larches are vigorous, light hungry trees that will shed old, low down branches if they are in the shade too much.
Your trees can reach 45 metres, but about 30 metres is the norm.
Larix decidua is the only deciduous conifer that is native to Europe. It is common in the Alps and Carpathian mountains. It was brought to Britain in the early 1600s. It is a common timber tree, with durable, rot-resistant softwood.