White fir Abies concolor 'Wintergold'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Not blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
white fir 'Wintergold'


The White Fir 'Wintergold' is a striking evergreen known for its unique winter foliage. The needles of this exquisite conifer transform to an exceptional golden-yellow color as the colder months approach, contrasting beautifully against the white snow or dreary winter landscapes. During the warmer seasons, the needles retain a lighter green color which then gradually shifts as the temperatures drop. The tree sports a conical shape with a dense growth of soft-to-touch needles, creating a lush and full appearance. The needles themselves are elongated, typically around 2 to 3 inches in length, and exhibit a curved shape that is slightly upward-turning. This gives the 'Wintergold' an overall graceful and feathery texture. The tree's branches are strong and spread horizontally outward from the central trunk, presenting the vibrant foliage in an elegant display. The bark is another attractive feature, presenting a smooth texture that with time, becomes more rugged. As it grows, the tree maintains its symmetrical shape, adding to its ornamental value. The White Fir 'Wintergold' is popular for its color and form, making it a sought-after choice for gardens or landscapes that aim to maintain visual interest even during the cold season.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      White Fir, Colorado White Fir, Concolor Fir, Silver Fir, White Balsam.

    • Common names

      Abies concolor 'Winter Gold', Abies parsonsii 'Wintergold', Abies concolor f. aurea 'Wintergold'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The White Fir is generally considered non-toxic to humans. However, as with many plants, it can cause minor irritations or allergic reactions in some individuals. If any parts of the plant are ingested in large quantities, there can be potential for mild gastrointestinal upset, but this is not common. The sap can sometimes cause skin irritation upon contact.

    • To pets

      The White Fir is also generally considered non-toxic to pets. Similar to humans, ingestion of the plant parts might lead to mild gastrointestinal discomfort in some pets, including symptoms like vomiting or diarrhea. Nonetheless, it is always advisable to prevent pets from eating plants, as individual reactions can vary, and some animals might be more sensitive than others.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Height

      30-50 feet (9-15 meters)

    • Spread

      10-20 feet (3-6 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area

      North America


  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Aesthetic Appeal: The 'Wintergold' Colorado fir features striking golden foliage that adds color and beauty to the landscape during the drab winter months.
    • Low Maintenance: It requires minimal care once established, with a natural resistance to many pests and diseases.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, it has good drought tolerance and can survive in areas with low water availability.
    • Cold Hardiness: This plant is well-suited for cold climates, being resilient in temperatures typical of USDA hardiness zones 3 to 7.
    • Wildlife Habitat: Provides food and shelter for wildlife such as birds and small mammals.
    • Evergreen Foliage: Offers year-round greenery and structure in the garden or landscape, even in the coldest months.
    • Windbreak and Privacy: Planted in groups, they can act as windbreaks or natural privacy screens.
    • Versatility: Suitable for a variety of landscape uses, including as a specimen plant, in group plantings, or as a focal point in the garden.
    • Soil Adaptability: Can adapt to a range of soil types, although it prefers well-drained, slightly acidic soils.
    • Non-Invasive: Unlike some ornamental plants, the 'Wintergold' Colorado fir is not known to be invasive or problematic in native ecosystems.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Woodworking: The White Fir's wood is soft, making it suitable for indoor woodworking projects, such as carving or making small wooden toys and decorative items.
    • Christmas Decorations: The foliage of the Wintergold can be used to create natural wreaths and garlands for holiday decorations, offering a golden-hued alternative to the traditional green.
    • Photography Backdrop: The unique golden foliage provides an appealing backdrop for outdoor photographers, particularly in autumn and winter settings.
    • Privacy Screening: This conifer can be planted in rows to create visual barriers or privacy screens in residential gardens.
    • Winter Garden Interest: The Wintergold variety adds color and interest to winter gardens, where much of the vegetation may be dormant or lack color.
    • Scented Products: The needles and wood can be processed to extract essential oils or scents for candles, potpourris, or other fragranced items.
    • Theme Gardens: This plant is perfect for ‘gold-themed’ gardens or landscapes where a specific color palette is being implemented.
    • Education: Botanical gardens and arboreta may use Wintergold as an example to educate visitors about plant genetic variations and horticultural breeding.
    • Craft Supplies: Small branches and twigs can be harvested and used in making artisanal crafts, such as wreath frames or rustic home decor elements.
    • Specimen Plant: Due to its distinctive color, it can serve as a specimen plant in a garden, showcasing the unique golden foliage as a focal point.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The White Fir is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The White Fir is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Endurance and Strength: As a type of fir tree, the 'Wintergold' signifies enduring strength due to its towering and robust nature, symbolizing one’s ability to withstand hardships and challenges over time.
    • Evergreen: The lasting green color throughout all seasons, even in winter, represents immortality and eternal life, symbolizing hope and the perseverance of life through adversity.
    • Purity: The White Fir, being known for its pleasant fragrance and unblemished foliage, suggests purity and cleanliness, symbolizing a fresh start or new beginnings.
    • Resilience: The ability of 'Wintergold' to grow on challenging sites on mountains and high altitude areas embodies resilience and adaptability in overcoming difficult environments.

Every 2-3 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring to Early Summer
Not needed
  • water dropWater

    White fir, commonly known as 'Wintergold', should be watered deeply to establish a strong root system, especially during its first growing seasons. Once mature, it is relatively drought-tolerant but should still receive additional watering during extended dry periods. Typically, watering once a week with 1 to 1.5 gallons of water is sufficient, but this may vary depending on soil type and climate. Increase watering frequency during hot or windy weather to ensure the soil remains moist, but avoid waterlogging as this can lead to root rot.

  • sunLight

    White fir prefers full sun to partial shade for optimal growth. The best spot would include at least 6 hours of direct sunlight, followed by light shade during the hottest part of the day. Avoid deeply shaded areas as this can impede its growth and health.

  • thermometerTemperature

    White fir thrives in a wide range of temperature conditions from well below freezing to about 80 degrees Fahrenheit. They can survive winter temps down to -40 degrees Fahrenheit, making them suitable for many climates. Ideal growing temperatures are between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit, maintaining these conditions will promote the best growth and needle color.

  • scissorsPruning

    White fir typically requires minimal pruning. If necessary, prune to shape the tree or remove any dead or damaged branches. The best time to prune is late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Pruning every few years is sufficient unless you notice damaged branches that need to be removed sooner.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    White fir 'Wintergold' thrives best in well-draining soil composed of loam, sand, and organic matter, with a soil pH that's slightly acidic to neutral, around 6.0 to 7.5.

  • plantRepotting

    White fir 'Wintergold' as a slow-growing conifer rarely needs repotting; it should be repotted every 4-5 years or when outgrowing its current space.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    White fir 'Wintergold' is tolerant of a range of humidity levels but prefers average to high humidity, typical of its natural forested environment.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Provide bright light, proper soil, and avoid dry heat for 'Wintergold'.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in sunlight, well-draining soil, and protect from harsh winds.

    • Hardiness zone

      4-7 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    White fir 'Wintergold' begins its life as a seed, usually germinating in moist, well-drained soil in the spring. As a seedling, it establishes a root system and begins to grow a single, straight stem with whorls of branches, and develops its characteristic needle-like leaves. During its juvenile phase, which can last for several years, it grows steadily in height and girth, eventually reaching maturity. The mature tree will begin to reproduce, producing cones at its apexes; the male cones release pollen which fertilizes the female cones, leading to seed development. Once fertilized, the female cones mature, turn brown, and release seeds to propagate the next generation, completing its reproductive cycle. The 'Wintergold' variety, known for its distinctive golden-yellow foliage in cold conditions, can live for many decades, continuing its growth and reproductive cycles throughout its lifespan until senescence leads to decline and eventually death.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to Early Summer

    • The White Fir 'Wintergold', more widely known as the Concolor Fir, is predominantly propagated through seed, especially in a commercial nursery context. The best time for seed propagation is in winter or early spring when seeds can be stratified to break dormancy. Stratification involves keeping the seeds in a moist medium at a cold temperature, usually around 34 to 41 degrees Fahrenheit (1 to 5 degrees Celsius), for a period of a few weeks to a few months. After stratification, the seeds are typically sown in well-drained soil in containers and placed in a greenhouse or cold frame to germinate. While seed propagation is the most common, it should be noted that this method may not always produce true-to-type progenies due to genetic variation.