Larch, Cone and Flowers (male and female)

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Larch, or Larix, is a genus of hardy, deciduous, coniferous trees of very graceful habit. They bear monoecious flowers, the male catkins being small and oval, whilst the female ones are much longer. The leaves are bright green, linear, soft, and usually produced in short bundles on each side of the spray. They appear very early in the spring. The timber, which is very hard and tough, is much used in shipbuilding and for railway sleepers, and in cabinet work is capable of taking a very high polish. The species most commonly planted is ‘L. europaea’, whcich grows to about 100 ft in height. Other species are ‘L. occidentalis’, a tall and handsome American tree and ‘L. laricina’, the tamarack, or hackmatack, of North America. This is a straggling tree, most common in swampy soils, with smaller cones than has the the European species. It reaches a height of 70 ft., and the wood is valuable for the same purposes as that of other larches. (1. Scale of cone with two seeds; 2. anther)


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