Alaska State Tree
Adoption of the Alaska State Tree
Alaska didn't become a state, officially, until 1959. When it entered the union, it was well prepared, bringing with it an official state seal, flag, flower, bird and a song all adopted by the Alaska Territorial Legislature.
After attaining statehood, a state fish (Chinook salmon) and a state tree (Sitka spruce) were the first new symbols to be brought on board by the Alaska State Legislature. Both were adopted in 1962 and both were important to the Alaska economy.
House Bill No. 325 proposed the Sitka spruce, "the most valuable tree species in Alaska," as the official state tree. The legislation was approved and the Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis) became the official tree of the state on February 28, 1962.
The Sitka spruce is also called the tideland spruce, coast spruce, and yellow spruce.
The Alaska Statutes
The following information is excerpted from the Alaska Statutes, Title 44, Chapter 44.09, Section 44.09.070.
TITLE 44. STATE GOVERNMENT.
The Sitka spruce (picea sitchensis), which is recognized as the most valuable tree species in Alaska and which is found in both national forests of the state, is the official tree of the state
Sitka Spruce (Picea sitchensis): Tree Identification Fact Sheet from the Virginia Tech.
Plant Profile for Picea sitchensis (Sitka Spruce): USDA, NRCS. 2004. The PLANTS Database, Version 3.5 (http://plants.usda.gov). National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.
Picea sitchensis (Sitka Spruce): United States Department of Agriculture: Forest Service: Agriculture Handbook 654: Silvics of North America.
Forest Products: Sitka Spruce: Alaska Office of Economic Development.
State Tree List: List of all of the state state trees.
Alaska Trees and Shrubs (Natural History) (Paperback): by Leslie A. Viereck, Elbert L. Little, Jr., University of Alaska Press (November, 1986)
A Field Guide to Western Trees (Peterson Field Guides: 44) (Paperback): by George A. Petrides, Olivia Petrides (Illustrator), Roger Tory Peterson (Series Editor), Houghton Mifflin; 2 edition (July 25, 1998)
A Field Guide to California and Pacific Northwest Forests (Peterson Field Guides(R)) (Paperback): by John C. Kricher (Photographer), Gordon Morrison (Illustrator), Roger Tory Peterson (Series Editor), Houghton Mifflin; Reprint edition (November 15, 1998).
A Field Guide to Rocky Mountain and Southwest Forests (Peterson Field Guides(R)) (Paperback): by John C. Kricher (Photographer), Gordon Morrison (Illustrator), Roger Tory Peterson (Series Editor), Houghton Mifflin; Revised edition (January 15, 1999).
National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Trees : Western Region: by Elbert Luther Little, Knopf; Chanticleer Press ed edition (June 12, 1980).
America's Famous and Historic Trees: From George Washington's Tulip Poplar to Elvis Presley's Pin Oak (Hardcover) by Jeffrey G. Meyer. America's Famous and Historic Trees tells the stories of various trees that Meyer and his cohorts rescued or propagated: oftentimes, when trees were going to be cut down, he and his workers headed off the bulldozers, rescuing the tree with their massive tree hoe. Other trees--like the Indian Marker Pecan in southeast Dallas--were propagated before they died.
Trees : National Champions (Hardcover) by Barbara Bosworth. Bosworth captures the ineffable grace and dignity of trees with clarity and directness: the green ash that shades a midwestern crossroads, the common pear that blooms in a Washington field, and the Florida strangler fig with its mass of entwining aerial roots. Her black and white photographs, panoramic views taken with an 8 x 10 camera, show the immensity of the largest species and the hidden triumphs of the smallest
Plants, Seeds & Flowers: Bulbs, seeds, plants, fertilizer, plant containers and more.
Gardening Tools: Pruners, rakes, shovels, hoes, trowels, cultivators and tillers, greenhouses, yard carts and more.
State Names, Seals, Flags, and Symbols: A Historical Guide, Third Edition - Benjamin F. Shearer and Barbara S. Shearer, Greenwood Press, 2002
State Names, Flags, Seals, Songs, Birds, Flowers and Other Symbols: A Study based on historical documents giving the origin and significance of the state names, nicknames, mottoes, seals, flowers, birds, songs, and descriptive comments on the capitol buildings and on some of the leading state histories, Revised Edition - George Earlie Shankle, Ph.D., The H.W. Wilson Company, 1938 (Reprint Services Corp. 1971)
Source: Alaska Legislature, (http://w3.legis.state.ak.us/home.htm), October 2, 2005
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