Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Larch (Larix), the name of a small genus of firs, with soft, linear, deciduous leaves, generally borne in tufts (fasciculate) on dwarf shoots. The anthers dehisce transversely, and the pollen-grains are very large and globose. The cones are small, erect, ovate-obtuse, the scales being woody and persistent with unthickened but irregular margins. L. europcxa, the common larch, is a native of the Alps and Carpathians, growing at altitudes of 3,000 to 6,000 feet. It was introduced into England in 1629, and into Scotland in 1725, since which date it has been extensively planted, as its quick-growing durable timber affords a rapid return for capital. Of late, however, the ravages of the larchcanker, a fungus known as Peziza willkomiiiii, among our larch plantations have caused landowners to look for some species to replace it. Larch bark is used in tanning, and the tree also yields Venice turpentine and a sugary excretion known as Briancon manna. Other species are L. pendula, the Tamarack or Hackmatack of North America, and others confined to Oregon and Columbia, to the Cascade Mountains, to Japan, to the Kurile Islands, to Siberia and to the Eastern Himalaya respectively.