European Silver Fir Abies alba
The European Silver Fir, a conifer native to the Mountains of Europe, from the Pyrenees to the Balkans, was introduced in 1603 and is now common in upland woodlands in the west and north of Britain. It has been planted in large gardens elsewhere. Like all silver firs the leaves tend to look silver when viewed from below because the needles have 2 broad white bands underneath.
There are about 50 species of Fir worldwide. They are often called Silver Firs. They are evergreen conifers found in upland areas of North America, Eurasia, Central America and North Africa. Silver Firs can easily be confused with Spruces and Douglas Firs but differ in the way the needles are attached to the shoot. They have cones that stand up whereas Spruces and Douglas Firs have cones that hang down.
European Silver Fir
Each needle has 2 white bands underneath. There is a pad, not a woody peg, where the needle joins the shoot.
Needles on the top layer are very short (1cm), those of the lower layer are longer (2cm).
The bark of a young tree.
It is rare to find an intact cone on the floor but you may find fragments like this.
You will always find discarded cone scales like this under the tree.
A few cones can be seen at the top of this tree.
Cones are high up on old trees and difficult to see. Like nearly all Silver Firs the cones break up on the tree leaving these spikes.