Budbursting of mountain hemlock trees

Asked May 12, 2020, 8:02 PM EDT

Hi I am trying to figure out when the mountain hemlock leaves begin to burst. I snapped photos at Hoodoo Ski Bowl area on May 11 but I still am unable to identify if I have missed the bud season or if the photos attached show the buds ready to burst. I hope you can clear up my confusion. Thank you. Maureen

Linn County Oregon

1 Response

Hi;

by any measure I know, they are not at bud break. But interpretation of that could depend on your purpose.

I am involved with the Oregon Season Tracker program, and our volunteers track precipitation and seasonal plant changes (phenology). Those volunteers need to record phases according to the definition provided by National Phenology Network, our national partner who maintains the web platform for data entry. The definition of budbreak is similar for all species, and generally is that a green tip is visible, (that is the new leaf or shoot -in the case of conifers- is emerging from among the leaf scales) but before whole needles, (down to their attachment point) are visible.

Here is the link to our photo gallery for Douglas-fir, http://oregonseasontracker.forestry.oregonstate.edu/douglas-fir running from a dormant bud (that looks like your images) through flowering and eventually to vegetative budbreak and to the presence of leaves.

Not knowing your purpose that may be too much info, or be off the mark, but I hope it is helpful.

Have fun out there and be safe.