Arborvitae, Eastern Coniferous

Thuja spp.

Eastern arborvitae is a relatively common landscape tree in the eastern half of Nebraska often used in foundation plantings and as screens along property lines. Mature trees may reach 30-40’ in time, but in cultivation typically grow only 10-25' tall, depending on the cultivar used. 

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Eastern arborvitae makes a nice hedgerow!
Fir, Concolor (White) Coniferous

Abies concolor

Concolor fir is the most reliable and easy to grow fir for Nebraska. It has become relatively popular as a landscape tree and has also been utilized in some shelterbelts on favorable sites.

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Concolor (white) Fir needles
Fir, Douglas Coniferous

Pseudotsuga menziesii

Douglas fir is one of the most important timber trees in the United States and is the backbone of the western timber industry. The Rocky Mountain variety is more adaptable to the Great Plains and has been grown successfully across Nebraska, primarily as a landscape tree but sometimes in shelterbelts. 

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Photograph of a douglas fir tree.
Hemlock, Eastern Coniferous

Tsuga Canadensis

Eastern hemlock is a shade-tolerant native of the eastern US growing from Minnesota to Maine and south to the higher elevations of Georgia. The tree is not abundant in Nebraska but is occasionally found in protected landscape plantings, especially where a shade-tolerant evergreen is desired. 

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Eastern Hemlock
Juniper, Rocky Mountain Coniferous

Juniperus scopulorum

As its name implies, Rocky Mountain Juniper is a common evergreen throughout the Rocky Mountains, extending into the Pine Ridge and Wildcat Hills of the Nebraska Panhandle. RM juniper is widely used in shelterbelts, wildlife plantings and landscape plantings in the western Great Plains.

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Rocky Mountain Juniper
Pine, Austrian Coniferous

Pinus Nigra

Austrian pine is a medium to large conifer that is native to southeastern Europe, especially the higher elevations of the Balkans and Turkey. It has been used extensively in shelterbelts across much of the central and northern Great Plains and is also used in park and landscape plantings. Diseases are now limiting its use in eastern Nebraska. 

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Looking up into tree's canopy.
Pine, Eastern White Coniferous

Pinus strobus

Eastern white pine is a fast-growing and relatively long-lived, soft-needled evergreen native to the northeastern US and Canada.  Its occasionally used for windbreaks and screens and has become a popular landscape tree in eastern Nebraska communities. 

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photo of eastern white pine in the summer.
Pine, Jack Coniferous

Pinus banksiana

Jack pine is a scrubby, northern pine native to much of Canada and south to the Great Lakes and northern New England. It grows further north in Canada than any other native pine. It is extremely cold hardy and drought tolerant and has been used in shelterbelts and conservation plantings in Nebraska where little else will grow.   

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Jack Pine pine cone.
Pine, Limber Coniferous

Pinus flexilis

Limber pine is a medium-sized evergreen native to the Rocky Mountains from Canada to New Mexico where it’s typically found at elevations of 5,000 to 12,000 feet, often reaching the tree line. A few disjunct stands reach out on to the western High Plains including the Pine Bluffs area of western Kimball County, making it one of only two pine species native to the state, the other being Ponderosa pine. 

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Limber pine tree
Pine, Pinyon (Colorado Pinyon) Coniferous

Pinus edulis

Pinyon pine is native to the Four Corners area of Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona where it is typically found growing with junipers on drier sites. It has been used in landscape and screen plantings in western Nebraska, especially the southern Panhandle. 

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Pinyon Pine tree