Tamarack - Larix laricina
One of the few deciduous conifers, this is a species of wet environments and mountainous slopes alike. It grows across the Great Lakes region, north and west across Canada and can survive the cold Arctic environment. There, this normally medium-sized tree (up to 70 feet) assumes a small, but treelike form. In autumn, the yellow needles brighten the dark forests. The cones are small and rounded without protruding bracts. The twigs are lined with peglike structures where the needles attach. Exceptionally cold tolerant, it often is a pioneering species.