The Grand Fir Trees can reach heights of up to 80 m when mature. The needles are soft and flat with rounded, notched ends. They are deep, dark green, and grooved on top with two very light bands underneath. The cones are oval-shaped and yellowish-green, growing upright on the branches, high in the crown.
The bark is smooth and grayish brown with white spots and resin-filled blisters when young, but the bark becomes rough and scaly with age.
It is found from sea level to mid-elevations on Vancouver Island and the southern coast. The grand fir prefers drier climates than the other true firs in British Columbia. In the Interior, it commonly grows in mixed coniferous forests with douglas fir, western hemlock, and western white pine. On the coast, western red cedar and flowering dogwood may also be present, with salal, red huckleberry, Oregon grape, western trillium, and vanilla leaf beneath.
The Grand Fir Tree has a thin bark which makes it susceptible to fire. But since advances in fire suppression have decreased the damage from fires, the grand fir has increased its population in BC. These forests are often home to bears, deer, cougars, owls, woodpeckers, salamanders, frogs, and mice and voles.