Horizontally branched with stiff needles, spruce are a prized evergreen in our Wisconsin landscape. Perhaps best known for their Christmas tree like appearance, spruce are in fact available in a variety of forms including sprawling shrubs, weeping ornamentals, and the quintessential towering conical shape. May be emerald green to frosty blue in color. Many varieties produce attractive cones.

All varieties prefer full sun and moist, well-drained soil. Moisture and drought tolerance varies, as well as disease resistance.

 Norway Spruce (Picea abies)

Moderate to fast growing. Will not tolerate drought or poor drainage. Some susceptibility to Rhizosphaera needle cast - allow adequate space between plants to improve airflow and prevent presence of disease. May be horizontal or weeping in form. Dark green foliage.

Golden Norway Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 3 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 30-40' tall, 25-30' wide

 

Bird's Nest Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 3 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 2-3' tall, 3-4' wide

White Spruce (Picea glauca)

Typically upright pyramidal in shape with little need for shaping to maintain shape. Some varieties may be weeping in form. Large varieties make an excellent choice of windbreak. Tolerant of clay soil but requires good drainage. Shallow rooted and intolerant of drought. Slow to moderate growth rate.

Black Hills Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 3 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 35-45' tall, 20-25' wide

 

Weeping White Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 3 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 15-20' tall, 3-4' wide

 

The Limey White Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 3 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 12-15' tall, 10-12' wide

 Blue Spruce (Picea pungens)

Typically pyramidal in shape with short, stiff needles. Blue-green foliage provides lovely contrast in the landscape. Prefers moist, well-drained soil. Somewhat drought tolerant. Will not tolerate poor drainage. Traditional Colorado Blue Spruce is particularly susceptible to Rhizosphaera needle cast. Plant with adequate space for growth and air flow to prevent disease, and look for resistant varieties such as Hoopsii.

The Blues Weeping Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 2 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 5-6' tall, spreading, weeping width

 

Sester's Dwarf Colorado Blue Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 2 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 10-12' tall, 6-8' wide

 

Hoopsi Colorado Blue Spruce

Hardiness Zones: 3 - 7

Exposure: Full Sun

Mature Size: 30-50' tall, 10-20' wide

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