Blue spruce trees are the most popular types of spruce trees because of their beautiful bluish colored needles. It is always important to choose the right tree for your landscape. You will find valuable facts and information on choosing the best variety of blue spruce for your yard.
Blue Spruce Facts
Blue spruces are in the spruce family, Picea. The spruce tree was used in ancient times for caulking ships, as the name picea is derived from the Latin word for “pitch”. They are known for their long life, and their short, rigid, sharp pointed needles that range in many colors. Spruces are the most popular of all the conifers, and they many types different types of spruces.
The bluest of the spruce family, is the tall, symmetrical, and formal-looking Colorado blue, P. Pungens ‘Glauca’. It is a native of the Rocky Mountains, but is hardy in Zones 3-8, but is not at its best in warmer regions. The soft silvery blue-gray foliage turns silver-gray to blue-green as the tree matures. It grows slowly to 30 to 50 feet and can live 600 to 800 years. The cultivar ‘Foxtail’ has a greater heat tolerance than other varieties. Blue spruce trees are very popular as Christmas trees.
Blue spruce trees are also used as windbreaks, as well as single specimens. Their wood is often used for musical instruments and as wooden aircraft parts.
Blue Spruce Tree Varieties
It is important to know what types of blue spruces are available and which one would be best for your particular landscape.
- Blue Globe Spruce, P. pungens ‘Glauca Globosa’, is an excellent choice of all of the blue spruce trees. It is a blue-needled, dwarf variety.
- Hoops blue Spruce, P. pungens ‘Hoopsii,’ is a beautiful steel-blue color.
- Moerheim Blue Spruce, P. pungens ‘Moerheimii, has a compact, dense form with blue needles.
- Iseli Foxtail Spruce, p. pungens ‘Mission Blue’, is a blue that has a bushy-needled form.
- Montgomery Spruce, P. pungens ‘Montgomery’, is a dwarf blue-needed tree with an excellent, dense growing habit. It has been known to revert to a taller form.
- Thompsen Blue Spruce, P. pungens ‘Thompsenii’, is silvery-blue in color.
Pests and Diseases of Blue Spruce Trees
- Blue spruces are often attacked by pests, such as, spider mites, the yellow-headed spruce sawfly, aphids, pine needle scale, and spruce needle miner.
- Diseases such as Lirula needle blight, Cytospora canker, and Rhizosphaera needle cast may attack blue spruces.
Related Species: Norway Spruce, P. Abies, and Black Hills Spruce, P. glauca var. Densata.
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