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Gardening Answers Knowledgebase

Knowledgebase record #253

Conifers of the Pacific Slope by Michael Edward Michael Edward Kauffmann, 2013

Reviewed by: Brian Thompson
Review date: 2015-10-01

Conifers of the Pacific Slope cover

If your exploration of native trees takes you on a trip farther afield, consider bringing “Conifers of the Pacific Slope” by Michael Edward Kauffmann. Inspired as a youth by a family visit to the forests of California, this Virginia native returned to work amongst the majestic trees that stirred his younger self. This field guide is a product of that passion and is designed for easy packing.

The scope is all of the native conifer species of the Pacific Coast from northern Baja California to well into British Columbia, and eastward to the Rockies. This includes some very impressive trees. In addition to the familiar Pacific Northwest conifers highlighted in the previous book, there are the many cypresses, junipers, and pines of California plus representatives from a few other genera, including the most impressive of them all, the coast Redwood (Sequoia sempervirens)and giant Sequoia (Sequoiadendron giganteum).

While intended as a field guide, the author provides lots of interesting bits of natural history with his descriptions and some wonderful maps that group related species together, including areas of hybridization. These, along with essays at the front and back, make this a book easily readable from cover-to-cover.

Excerpted from the Fall 2015 Arboretum Bulletin.

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