Image for Western Hemlock

Western Hemlock

Scientific name

Tsuga heterophylla


Western Hemlock is a large, long-lived coniferous tree species that typically grows between 30 and 50 m in height. The bark is dark brown to reddish brown colored, thick, and deeply grooved. The needles are flat, shiny, soft, short stalked, dark green colored with white undersides, are all different sizes, and appear as flat sprays. This tree can often be identified by its drooping top. The foliage is an important food source for many wildlife species including deer, elk, and bears. These trees are also valuable as nesting habitat for many bird species.

Planting conditions

Western Hemlock grows best in moist to normal conditions with shade, full sun, or partial sun exposure. It prefers well-drained, organically rich soil in humid high precipitation areas. It is very tolerant of shade but can grow faster with some sun exposure. It is intolerant of drought, frost, and air pollution. It is also vulnerable to being windblown because of its shallow root system. This tree can be naturally found in moist forests and along riparian areas in the Pacific Northwest.


  • Plant height:
    • Any
    • Over 3m
  • Moisture level:
    • Normal
    • Moist
  • Light conditions:
    • Full sun
    • Partial sun
    • Shade
  • Soil type:
    • Loamy
  • pH:
    • Normal
  • Depth:
    • Potted
  • Eco Zone:
    • 2a
    • 2b
    • 3a
    • 3b
    • 4a
    • 4b
    • 5a
    • 5b
    • 6a
    • 6b
    • 7a
    • 7b
    • 8a
  • Plant type:
    • Tree
  • Height:
    • 30-50 m
  • Spread:
    • 5 m