Western hemlock is a large evergreen coniferous tree growing to 165–230 ft (50–70 m) tall, exceptionally 273. 42 ft (83. 34 m), and with a trunk diameter of up to 9 ft (2. 7 m). It is the largest species of hemlock, with the next largest (mountain hemlock, T. mertensiana) reaching a maximum of 194 ft (59 m). The bark is brown, thin and furrowed. The crown is a very neat broad conic shape in young trees with a strongly drooping lead shoot, becoming cylindric in older trees; old trees may have no branches in the lowest 100–130 ft (30–40 m). At all ages, it is readily distinguished by the pendulous branchlet tips. The shoots are very pale buff-brown, almost white, with pale pubescence about 1 mm (1⁄32 in) long. The leaves are needle-like, 5–23 mm (3⁄16–29⁄32 in) long and 1. 5–2 mm (1⁄16–5⁄64 in) broad, strongly flattened in cross-section, with a finely serrated margin and a bluntly acute apex.
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