Trees to 30m; trunk to 2m diam.; crown conic. Bark brown, scaly and fissured. Twigs light brown, thinly covered with short, dark hairs. Buds oblong, 2--3mm. Leaves 10--20mm, mostly spreading in all directions from twigs, flat but slightly revolute; abaxial surface glaucous, with 2 broad, conspicuous stomatal bands, adaxial surface shiny green; margins entire. Seed cones ovoid to oblong, 2.5--4 ´ 1.5--2.5cm; scales oblong, 12--18 ´ 8--12mm, bases clawed, apex rounded. 2 n =24. Rocky montane slopes; 700--1200m; Ga., N.C., S.C., Tenn., Va. Tsuga caroliniana is valuable as an attractive ornamental; a number of cultivars have been developed. The wood is of little commercial importance because of the combination of mediocre quality and the relative rarity of the species in nature.
Similar to no. 1 [Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carri鳥]; lvs entire, averaging slightly larger, more diversely oriented, so that the sprays are not so flat; cones 25-35 mm, the scales widely spreading at maturity, oblong-ovate, the exposed portion of the middle ones at least as long as wide. Ravines and rocky hillsides in the Blue Ridge Prov., rarely on the Piedmont; sw. Va. to n. Ga.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.