The most important of the firs, in an economic sense, is the Norway spruce (Picea excelsa), so well known in British plantations, though rarely attaining there the gigantic height and grandeur of form it often displays in its native woods.
The oak requires shelter in the early stages of growth; in England the Scotch pine is thought best for this purpose, though Norway spruce answers as well on suitable ground, and larch and other trees are sometimes substituted.
Above the sea, the limit of the luxuriant growth of that hardy conifer in Britain; and in moist valleys or on imperfectly drained acclivities Norway spruce is more suitable.
The larch is said not to succeed on arable land, especially where corn has been grown, but experience does not seem to support this view; that against the previous occupation of the ground by Scotch fir or Norway spruce is probably better founded, and, where timber is the object, it should not be planted with other conifers.
In the most prevalent variety of the Norway spruce the wood is white, apt to be very knotty when the tree has grown in an open place, but, as produced in the close northern forests, often of fine and even grain.
The white fir, or Norway spruce (Abies excelsa), is exported fro Russia, Sweden and Norway, where it grows in enormous quantit It is the tallest and straightest of European firs, growing with a slender trunk to a height of from 80 to 100 ft.
By the peasantry of its native countries the Norway spruce is applied to innumerable purposes of daily life.
Pectinate), may be taken as the type, - a lofty tree, rivalling the Norway spruce in size, with large spreading horizontal boughs curving upward toward the extremities.