Arbutus at Saanich Inlet
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Arbutus is the only native broad-leafed tree in Canada that retains its leaves year round. What makes Arbutus special is that they have a very specific environment in which they can grow. Within that environment, they are extremely hardy and are great at resisting droughts, extreme winds, poor soil nutrients, and even wildfires. These trees are found on open rocky outcrops near the ocean, keeping within about 8km of the shorelines and occasionally in deeper soils in forest openings within the shoreline distance. It is not rare for an Arbutus tree to live up to 400 years.