Cedar of Lebannon

Cedrus Libani (A. Rich.)

Common Name: Cedar of Lebannon, Lebannese Cedar

Description: A very distinctive tree up to 40M high. Young trees are broadly pyramidal in shape, later broadening out into the characteristic horizontal shape. The bark is dark grey with large thick horizontal branches. The needles 1.5-3.5 cm in size in tufts are usually dark green. The cones are erect, brown when mature, the seed are shed in the spring.

Origin: This species is native to Asia Minor. It is now rare in the Southern area of its range in the Jebel Alaonite Mountains of Syria and the Lebannon and Anti-Lebannon Mountains in Lebannon. It is still common in the Taurus and Cilician Turus Mountains in Turkey. It is very tolerant of extremes of heat and cold. It likes light and lime rich soils. Closely related species are found in similar environments in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco, Cyprus and the Himalayas.

The Cedar of Lebannon was one of the first large exotic conifers to be planted widely on estates in Britain and Ireland. Its date of introduction was probably around 1645. It adapts well to Irish condition once drainage is good.

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