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Gardening in the Rainy Zone.
LARCH, EUROPEAN LARCH, COMMON LARCH
Pronounced: LAR-iks dee-SID-yew-ah
Sunset zones: A1-A3, 1-9, 14-17.
USDA zones: 3-6.
Height: 70-100 feet (21-30 m).
Width: 25-30 feet (7-9 m).
Cylindrical to conical female cones with 40 to 50 scales and protruding bracts.
Deciduous, 1½-inch long, pale green needles in loose spirals and whorls along the stems, turning yellow in autumn before they fall.
Deep, well-drained soil.
Sow seed in a seedbed in early spring. | Graft in winter. | Cuttings are difficult to root.
Prune in midsummer.
Pests and Diseases:
Caterpillars, sawflies, and aphids may be problems. Needle blight, needle cast, rust and cankers may also cause problems for a larch tree.
Rainy Side Notes
Larix decidua is a beautiful conifer when young with horizontal branches and weeping branchlets. As the tree ages, it looses some of its beauty. Larix lose their needles in fall after they turn from a soft green to a buttery yellow. This is beautiful in the autumn landscape with other shrubs with bright fall colors nearby.
Some trees live to be 1000 years old. Many of these trees can get quite tall; one tree in the UK reaches 150 feet tall (46 m). Another tree was reported as tall as 184 feet (56 m) in Baden, Germany. In the Alps, some old trunks have bark one-foot thick. Larches are important timber trees in Europe and planted on a large scale as a timber crop.
Photographed at Savage Plant & Landscape in Kingston, Washington.