Antonucci Lawn and Garden would like to take a look at some of the most popular Sierra Nevada evergreen trees. Learn more about our Reno landscaping services!

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These evergreen trees add to the picturesque beauty of the Sierra Nevada Mountains that range from the Mojave Desert all the way to the Cascade Range in Northern California. Spanning a distance of close to 400 miles, this Sierra Mountain range has an impressive width of 50 miles and over 80 miles wide at Lake Tahoe. There are many species of trees that grow in the Sierra Nevada mountains. We would like to look at the various conifer trees, which are cone-bearing evergreens and examine each one a little closer. These trees can add to your Reno landscaping design.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen Trees, reno landscapingLodgepole Pine:

These Sierra Nevada trees grow in normally moist areas and will grow within elevations of 6000 to 9000 ft. In the drier climates, these evergreens can be seen at elevations of 11,000 ft. Lodgepole pines can grow well on a wide range of landforms including meadows, slopes, and basins or steep and rocky slopes and ridges. It grows better on moister east and north facing slopes than on dry south or west-facing slopes.

Within the Sierra Nevada Mountains, these Lodgepole pines are often referred to as the Tamarack pines. They produce a two-needled pine that is fairly short and prickly. These trees contain many small, golf ball-sized cones. In the Sierras, Lodgepole cones open with or without the help of fire, producing winged seeds carried by the wind. Lodgepole pines are very vulnerable to windstorms, especially individual pines that are somewhat isolated from the pack. At the appropriate elevations, these evergreens are easily seen along the Sonora Pass road and along the Generals Highway in Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen Trees, reno landscapingWestern White Pine:

The Western White Pine is actually the state tree for Idaho They can grow up to 150 feet tall. They are normally found in elevations of 7,500 to 10,500 feet where the snow-pack is deep and the growing season is very short. Also commonly known as “silver pines,” Western White pines have slender, soft blue-green needles 2 to 4 inches long growing in bundles of five.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen TreesWestern white pines can be identified by 6 to 10 inch-long narrow, slightly curved cones hanging in bunches from the tips of branches that sort of look like bananas. They only bear a few cones, though, usually every 3 to 4 years. Their trunks are straight with layers of horizontal branches. The bark is light gray on young trees, maturing to brownish-orange sections. These Sierra Nevada evergreen trees can be seen growing alongside the Lodgepole pine.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen Trees, reno landscapingWhitebark Pine:

These are one of the smaller evergreen trees found in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, standing between 3 to 35 feet and found in higher elevations of 9,000 to 11,000 feet. Harsh winds, cold temperatures and short growing seasons at this elevation all contribute to give these Sierra Nevada evergreen trees a shrubby, twisted shape referred to as “Krummholz,” a German word for wind-shaped trees-meaning “crooked wood.”

Sierra Nevada Evergreen TreesJeffrey Pine:

Jeffrey Pines are found in elevations ranging from 2,000 to 9,000 feet. These Sierra Nevada evergreen trees are very tall and come with blue-green needles that come in bundles of three and are up to 6 inches long. Their cones are 6 to 10 inches long and oval, and very prickly. The Jeffrey pine bark is deeply furrowed, and reddish-brown. It also has a strong vanilla or pineapple odor. It typically grows to 4 to 6 feet in diameter, and 170 to 200 feet in height. The Jeffrey pine also grows in a diverse range of climates and a diverse range of elevations. It grows well on harsh and infertile sites. It is tolerant of drought and adapts to cold weather because it requires a shorter growing season.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen TreesPinyon Pine:

These Sierra Nevada evergreen trees are very popular in the Owens Valley and Mono Basin. They can also be found quite extensively in the Nevada deserts. The BLM land east of Carson City and Carson Valley is filled with Pinyon pine trees. Pinyon pines grow on dry mountain slopes and live in elevations of 4,500 to 6,500 feet. They are small shrubby trees standing only 15 to 30 feet tall. They have thick-scaled cones usually about 2-3 inches in length.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen TreesRed Fir:

The California Red Fir tree gets its name from its deep red inner bark. This is a slow-growing tree, but when fully matured, can reach heights of up to 200 feet. This a higher elevation evergreen, living in elevations of 6,000 to 10,000 feet. The Red Fir pine cones are barrel-shaped and are 6-8 inches long and purplish-brown in color. The needles are short, thick and blunt, and square enough to be rolled between the fingers. They are up to 1.25 inches in length, with a curve at the base. The Red Fir, when surrounded by snow, create some of most beautiful picturesque scenes on the Eastern Sierra mountains.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen TreesWhite Fir:

The White Fir enjoys growing in rocky terrain and live in elevations of 3,000 to 8,000 feet, however, you can find them as high as 10,000 feet. They are not as popular as the Red Fir on the Eastern Sierra slopes. It is a large evergreen with a broad range of sizes. They can grow anywhere from 60 feet to 200 feet. This evergreen tree has silver-bluish/green pine needles that grow 2 -3 inches long. The White Fir is found in areas characterized by a moderately humid climate with long winters and moderate to heavy snowfall. It is found primarily where precipitation exceeds 20 inches. These Sierra Nevada evergreen trees can live up to 300 years, or longer.

Sierra Nevada Evergreen TreesWestern Juniper:

These Sierra Nevada evergreen trees are a member of the Cyprus family and can grow anywhere in elevations from 6,000 to 10,500 feet. They tend to grow in dry rocky locations throughout the Eastern Sierra mountain range. They have bulky bark that often looks stripped and tethered. This hardy tree has roots that extend down through crevices in the rocks which act as an anchor in areas where the soil is lacking and where extreme exposure to blizzards and summer drought do not allow other conifers to survive.

The Eastern Sierra mountain range is one of the most beautiful places in the country. The rugged mountain tops and the more than 2,000 freshwater lakes, make this mountain range a popular vacation spot for millions of families. The Sierra Nevada evergreen trees add to the already picturesque mountain range and Reno landscaping. The variety of trees provides a uniqueness to the Sierra Nevada range unlike any other mountain range in the country.

For our next post, check out some of our favorite Northern Nevada Fall Colors that can be utilized in your Reno landscaping project! For commercial landscape or residential landscape design Reno NV, visit Antonucci Lawn and Garden, or give us a call at 775.841.5296 for all of your Reno landscaping needs.
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