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Balsam Fir vs Fraser Fir | 14 Key Differences

Since it is the Christmas season, all talks will be around Christmas trees, wreaths, ornaments, and decorations. The market will be flooded with trees, wreaths, and decorations galore, giving you ample choices to decide how to decorate your Christmas tree this year. 

You can go for a tree with decorations that follow a color theme, or a tree where there is a mixture of all the colors of Christmas ornaments. Whatever the decision, the most important thing to do first is to get a Christmas tree that will suit your space and décor.

Christmas trees come in different sizes and shapes, there are different types of trees you can use as a Christmas trees. Pine trees, Fir trees, and Spruce trees are the most popular trees that are used as Christmas trees. In this blog post, let us have a look at the two trees, Balsam Fir, and Fraser Fir, and why they are liked by many to put up as Christmas trees in their homes.

Balsam Fir

The Balsam Fir is pyramidical in shape, has dark green needles, and reaches a height of around 40-60 feet. This evergreen coniferous tree stands upright and straight, and has a spire-like crown. The Balsam Fir is used as a Christmas tree by many because of these features, and has many benefits apart from being used as a Christmas tree. The flat needle-like leaves hold the Christmas ornaments very well when decorated. 

The foliage is fragrant, and that adds to the Christmas vibes in your home during the Christmas season. It is used for cough, constipation, wounds, cuts, bruises, urinary tract infections, and others. The Balsam Fir is found in the Appalachian Mountains in North America, you will get it in different sizes and heights to buy to fit the space you want to keep it. 

Fraser Fir

The Fraser Fir is conical in shape and has stronger branches that are turned upward. They are dark blue or dark green in color, and have a fragrance emanating from the needles. Since the branches of the Fraser Fir trees are turned upward, the trees look compact.

The tree is named after John Fraser, the Scottish botanist who spent a lot of time exploring the Appalachian Mountains. These trees grow in fertile rocky to sandy areas where the soil is acidic.

Balsam Fir vs Fraser Fir

  1. The Balsam Fir grows up to 28-30 meters tall, and the tree grows at a normal speed. It grows 12 inches annually. The Fraser Fir grows to a height of 30-50 feet.
  2. Balsam Fir looks fuller than Fraser Fir. The Fraser Fir is less full, and the branch density is different from that of a Balsam Fir. Since there is space between the branches in a Fraser Fir, it will look more attractive after the decorations as the Christmas ornaments can be hung properly.
  3. The Fraser Fir has stronger branches than the Balsam Fir and can hold Christmas ornaments better, especially if they are heavy. The branches of the Balsam Fir are not that strong compared to the Fraser Fir. They are more flexible and that can make it difficult to hold the Christmas ornaments properly.
  4. The Balsam Fir has flat needles and branches. The needles are dark green and 15 to 30 mm long. The Fraser Fir is a conifer, and these trees have needles. The needles are short, grow in two rows, and are 10-23 mm long. 
  5. The Fraser Fir is for all those who are sensitive to strong fragrances. The Balsam Fir is for all who want a strong scent Christmas tree. 
  6. Balsam Fir is used for timber and Fraser Fir is used less for timber.
  7. In the Balsam pinecone, the bracts are short and are beneath the scales. The length of the Balsam cone is 4-8 cm, and the mature cone is 5-10 cm. It is dark purple in color, and ripens in the first fall in the months of August and September. 
  8. In the Fraser Fir pinecone, the bracts are longer than the scales which makes them curve downward. The fruits are cones in a Fraser Fir, and the color is dark brownish purple. It turns to pale brown when it matures, and when it matures, they are ready to release seeds. 
  9. The Balsam Fir comes in two colors, silver to dark green, and the Fraser Fir colors are deep blue green in color.
  10. The Balsam Fir grows faster than the Fraser Fir. The Fraser Fir grows slowly when compared to Balsam Fir. 
  11. The Balsam Fir bark is gray and smooth, and has resin blisters on it. With age, the bark of the Balsam Fir becomes rough and has large blisters.
  12. The Fraser Fir has a smooth bark when it is a young tree, and it roughens when the tree matures. The color of the Fraser Fir tree bark is silvery gray-brown.
  13. Balsam Fir has flowers, and they open in late May or early June. The color of the male flower is purple to yellow-brown, and the color of the female flower is purple.
  14. The Fraser Fir has male and female flowers like the Balsam Fir, and they grow on the same tree. The color of the male flowers is yellow to purple, and the female flowers are purple in color with a crown.


The above tips will help you choose either a Balsam Fir or a Fraser Fir for your Christmas tree in your home. They are both great trees that will make good Christmas trees though the Fraser Fir is more popular as a Christmas tree. 

You know there are lots of artificial Christmas trees in the market, but nothing can match the charm and beauty of an original Christmas tree. Go get your Christmas tree today, and start decorating it to suit your home décor. Make this Christmas season a happy and memorable one, be it a Balsam Fir or a Fraser Fir.

You can buy Christmas trees in Singapore using the link below.

Buy Christmas tree Singapore

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