ABIES GRANDIS 'GRAND FIR'
[Prov. United Kingdom]
Pinaceae: fast-growing conifer to 40–70 m. comb-like arrangement of soft, shining, green needles in 2 rows on either side of downy olive-green twigs. Needles up to 5cm long, with notched tip and pale bands below. Orange-scented when crushed. Smooth cones, less than 10cm long and high up on the trees, and are only produced by trees that are at least 50 years old. Native of Western USA, but planted in Britain for ornament and sometimes commercially. A Grand Fir grows on the Ardkinglas Estate in Argyll, Scotland. It stands on the banks of Loch Fyne, and is 64 m tall, and is thought to have been planted by the Callander family in 1875.
The inner bark can be cooked, then is usually dried, ground into a powder and then used as a thickening in soups or mixed with cereals when making bread. It is best used in the spring when it is rich and juicy. It has been used as an emergency food, it is only used when all else fails. The gum from the trunk is hardened and used as a chewing gum. It can also be made into a drink. Young shoot tips are used as a tea substitute.
A gum that exudes from the bark is used externally as an ointment, this has also been used as a wash for sore and infected eyes and as a gargle for sore throats. A decoction is laxative and tonic, it is used to treat stomach problems. Externally, the gum is applied as a poultice to cuts and sores. A decoction of the root bark or stem is used in the treatment of stomach problems and TB. A poultice is applied to joints to ease rheumatism or to the chest to treat lung haemorrhages. A decoction of the leaves is used as a tonic and in the treatment of colds.
Seeds of the true fir species are relatively easy to germinate and grow. The dormancy within the seed is short and easily broken. This is achieved by a short period of cold stratification in the fridge.
You can do this by first soaking the seeds in water for 24 hours. Fully drain away all of the water and place the seeds in a zip-lock freezer bag. Place the seeds in the fridge, it is important that during this period that the seeds do not dry out or are waterlogged otherwise the pre-treatment will be ineffective. After between 6 and 8 weeks under these conditions the seeds are ready to be sown. In general, the seeds will fail to germinate unless treated in this way, simply sowing untreated seeds in compost at room temperature will not break down the dormancy and germination will be disappointing.
Fill your chosen container with a good quality general potting compost. Suitable containers could be plant pots, seed trays or plug trays or even improvised containers with drainage holes. Firm the compost gently and sow the seeds on the surface. If you are sowing in plug trays, sow 2 or 3 seeds per cell. Cover the seeds with a couple of millimetres of vermiculite or failing that a fine layer of sieved compost. Follow with a gentle watering and keep them at room temperature.
Germination will begin a few weeks from sowing. The seedlings are reasonably robust and trouble free and usually grow to a height of between 2 and 5 cm in the first growing season depending on the sowing date and cultural techniques. Densely sown seedlings are at risk from fungal diseases such as “damping off” which can cause rapid loss of many seedlings.
Developing seedlings should be fine in full sun, keep them well watered and free of competing weeds. Growth will accelerate in the second and subsequent years and the developing young trees should be re-potted as necessary preferably during the dormant season. After perhaps 3 years they are ready to be planted in their permanent position.
APPROX. 20+ SEEDS
Every order will receive a free packet of seeds as a thank you!
I have had to remove all listings of poisonous plants, which include the nightshade family, and monkshoods. All these plants and more are still available from my store:
ORDERS MAY BE DELAYED TWO OR THREE DAYS DUE TO WORK COMMITMENTS, SO PLEASE BE PATIENT!
ORDERS MADE BETWEEN MARCH - MAY COULD BE DELAYED UP TO A WEEK. THIS IS A VERY BUSY TIME FOR ANYONE ONE IN THIS BUSINESS.
IF YOU ARE THE IMPATIENT TYPE PLEASE LOOK ELSEWHERE!
I LIVE IN THE UNITED KINGDOM NOT THE USA, SO ORDERS WILL TAKE 2-4 WEEKS.
Due to customs issues I do not ship to Brazil!
SHIPPING TO AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND ARE AT YOUR OWN RISK, I AM STOPPING THE REFUNDING OF LOST ITEMS TO THESE COUNTRIES!!!
IF YOU FAIL TO GERMINATE YOUR SEEDS PLEASE DON’T LEAVE BAD FEEDBACK, SEEDS ARE ALWAYS FRESH AND TESTED FOR VIABILITY BEFORE LISTING, SO I KNOW THAT THEY DO GERMINATE, IF YOU HAVE ANY PROBLEMS PLEASE JUST ASK!!!
PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE NEGATIVE FEEDBACK FOR SEEDS THAT HAVE BEEN LOST IN THE POST, THIS IS NOT MY FAULT AND COMPLETELY OUT OF MY CONTROL, SIMPLY LET ME KNOW AND I WILL HAPPILY RECTIFY THE PROBLEM!
THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME.
LET ME KNOW AND I WILL HAPPILY RECTIFY THE PROBLEM!
THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME.