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Home > Explore > State Symbols > Mushroom to Tree

State Symbols: Mushroom to Tree

Animal-Fish | Flag-Motto | Mushroom-Tree

 

Mushroom, State
The 1999 Legislature recognized the Pacific golden chanterelle (Cantharellus formosus) as the official mushroom of the State of Oregon. This mushroom is a wild, edible fungi of high culinary value that is unique to the Pacific Northwest. More than 500,000 pounds of the Pacific golden chanterelles are harvested annually in Oregon, representing a large portion of the commercial mushroom business.

Pacific golden chanterelle

   

Hazelnut

Nut, State
The hazelnut (Corylus avellana) was named state nut by the 1989 Legislature. Oregon grows 99 percent of the entire U.S. commercial crop. The Oregon hazelnut, unlike wild varieties, grows on single-trunked trees up to 30 or 40 feet tall. Adding a unique texture and flavor to recipes and products, hazelnuts are preferred by chefs, bakers, confectioners, food manufacturers and homemakers worldwide.

   

Rock, State
The Thunder-egg (geode) was named state rock by the 1965 Legislature after rockhounds throughout Oregon voted it first choice. Thunder-eggs range in diameter from less than one inch to over four feet. Nondescript on the outside, they reveal exquisite designs in a wide range of colors when cut and polished. They are found chiefly in Crook, Jefferson, Malheur, Wasco and Wheeler counties.

Thunder-egg

   

State seal

The state seal bears the inscription "The Union."

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Seal, State
The state seal consists of an escutcheon, or shield, supported by 33 stars and divided by an ordinary, or ribbon, with the inscription “The Union.” Above the ordinary are the mountains and forests of Oregon, an elk with branching antlers, a covered wagon and ox team, the Pacific Ocean with setting sun, a departing British man-of-war signifying the departure of British influence in the region and an arriving American merchant ship signifying the rise of American power. Below the ordinary is a quartering with a sheaf of wheat, plow and pickax, which represent Oregon’s mining and agricultural resources. The crest is the American Eagle. Around the perimeter of the seal is the legend “State of Oregon 1859.” A resolution adopted by the Constitutional Convention in session on September 17, 1857, authorized the president to appoint a committee of three—Benjamin F. Burch, L.F. Grover and James K. Kelly—to report on a proper device for the seal of the state of Oregon. Harvey Gordon created a draft, to which the committee recommended certain additions that are all incorporated in the state seal.

   

Seashell, State
In 1848, a conchologist (shell expert) named Redfield named the Fusitriton oregonensis after the Oregon Territory. Commonly called the Oregon hairy triton, the shell is one of the largest found in the state, reaching lengths up to five inches. The shells are found from Alaska to California and wash up on the Oregon coast at high tide. The legislature named the state shell in 1991.

Oregon hairy triton

   

Jory soil

Soil, State
The Legislature designated Jory soil as the Oregon state soil by concurrent resolution in 2011. The Jory soil is distinguished by its brick-red, clayish nature as it has developed on old volcanic rocks through thousands of years of weathering. It is estimated to exist on more than 300,000 acres of western Oregon hillsides and is named after Jory Hill in Marion County.

 

Jory soil is very productive and generally supports forest vegetation such as Douglas fir and Oregon white oak. Many areas with the soil have been cleared and are now used for agriculture. Jory soil, coupled with the Willamette Valley climate, provides an ideal setting for various crops, including wine grapes, wheat, Christmas trees, berries, hazelnuts, and grass seed.

   

Song, State
J.A. Buchanan of Astoria and Henry B. Murtagh of Portland wrote “Oregon, My Oregon,” in 1920. With this song, Buchanan and Murtagh won a statewide competition sponsored by the Society of Oregon Composers, gaining statewide recognition. The song became the official state song in 1927.

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State song

   

State tree

Tree, State
The Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), named for David Douglas, a 19th century Scottish botanist who traveled through Oregon in the 1820s, was designated state tree in 1939. Great strength, stiffness and moderate weight make it an invaluable timber product said to be stronger than concrete. Averaging up to 200' in height and six feet in diameter, heights of 325' and diameters of 15' can also be found.

   

 

Animal-Fish | Flag-Motto | Mushroom-Tree