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Balsam Fir

Will Ship Spring 2024

Plant Type: Evergreen, bare-root

Zones:  3-5

Soil Type:  Loamy & Sandy Soils

Site Selection: Full Sun, Partial Sun

Mature Height & Width:  50-70' and 20-25' Spread

Growth Rate:  Slow - 8-12" per year once established

Moisture Requirements: Average

Balsam Fir Plugs Also Available - CLICK HERE

Plant Characteristics

Balsam Fir

Abies balsamea

The Balsam Fir is an extremely popular choice for both personal and commercial Christmas tree production. This conifer has shiny soft green needles and shears very nicely. The Balsam Fir is a favorite for wreath makers, who love to use the fragrant green boughs in their work. This evergreen exhibits short needles which are 1/2 - 1" in length and cones which measure 2-4" in length. Pyramidal in shape, this symmetrical fir tree is quite ornamental. The Balsam Fir is also quite shade tolerant. Buy your Balsam Fir seedlings from our nursery today!

  • The Balsam Fir is another classic Christmas tree as is the Fraser Fir 
  • The bark on the Balsam Fir is thin, ash gray and smooth.  Younger trees have blisters on the bark that contain a sticky resin which is very fragrant
  • While always a beautiful evergreen, the tree does slightly lose it's shapely Christmas tree form as it ages
  • This conifer prefers cold climates to the heat and dryness of some others
  • In its natural habitat, it is common to see the Balsam Fir associated with Black Spruce, White Spruce and Quaking Aspen

Fun Fact:  Balsam Fir oil is an EPA approved non toxic rodent repellent.

Common Uses for the Balsam Fir:

  • Popular Christmas tree
  • Evergreen
  • Specimen tree
  • Good wildlife value
  • Grown for pulpwood and small sawtimber used in light framing

The Balsam Fir provides food for deer, moose, American red squirrels, crossbills and chickadees.  This conifer provides shelter for moose, snowshoe hares, white-tailed deer, ruffed grouse and other small mammals and songbirds. Timber wolves, pine marten, fisher, lynx, and bobcat are associated with the type of woodland in which the Balsam Fir grows.  The needles are eaten by some lepidopteran caterpillars.

Product Questions

I would preferred to buy a grown tree to keep it in a big planter in and out of the house about 5 or 6 feet, maybe able to transplant on the back yard,l leave
On the hills of Yavapai Az,AZ, you

Question by: Alicia Campitelli on Oct 27, 2020, 8:17 PM
We do not sell trees in that size range. Please understand, we are unable to ship to AZ, due to state regulations.
Answer by: Chief River Nursery on Oct 28, 2020, 10:23 AM
Can the Balsam Fir survive in Vermont?
Question by: Devon Lawson on Dec 2, 2020, 8:48 PM
The Balsam Fir growing zones are 3-5. Looks like Vermont's growing zone is 4. So yes, you can grow them in Vermont.
Answer by: Chief River Nursery on Dec 3, 2020, 9:12 AM
Some years we bought a tree which we love. We think it was called a Canadian balsam. Would this be the same as a balsam for?
Question by: Ronald White on Apr 9, 2022, 10:51 AM
Abies balsamea - Some people call this tree Canada Balsam. It is native to most of eastern and central Canada. When searching out a specific plant, it's best to use the scientific (Latin) name. Most plants have multiple names in the vernacular. The Latin name is always the exact name.
Answer by: Chief River Nursery on Apr 9, 2022, 5:36 PM
Does it need deer protection?
Question by: Mitch Dokken on Dec 6, 2022, 4:59 PM
The Balsam Fir is not deer resistant. If you have a heavy deer population you will need to protect the trees.
Answer by: Chief River Nursery on Dec 7, 2022, 8:19 AM