Tree of the Week

Colorado Blue Spruce: A Rocky Mountain Grandeur

By Arbor Day Foundation | February 2, 2016

Picea pungens

It was not until 1862 that this species was discovered growing in enchanted meadows and stream sides high up in the Rocky Mountains. Once found, the fame of this blue spruce spread quickly, making the Colorado blue spruce is one of our most widely planted landscape trees as well as the state tree of Colorado.

Here are a few things to note if you’re considering adding a Colorado blue spruce to your landscape.

Environmental Conditions:

  • Grows well in acidic, clay, loamy, moist, rich sandy and well drained soils. Is somewhat drought tolerant (hardiness zones 2-7).
  • Slow to medium growing tree, growing one to two feet a year, reaching 50-75 feet at maturity.
  • Does best in full sun, at least six hours of direct sunlight every day.
  • Bonus: Deer resistant, seldom severely damaged.

Physical Attributes:

  • Needles are sharp-pointed 1 to 1- ½ inches in length with silvery to blue-green color.
  • Produces 3-4 inch light brown cones with thin, paper-like scales.
  • Grows in a columnar, pyramidal shape and withstand win better than most spruces due to its wide-spreading root system, making a great privacy fence.

Tag us in a photo with your Colorado blue spruce!

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1 Comment

  • Reply A. Jason Barto January 17, 2017 at 10:29 pm

    Nice photo of the Cooley spruce gall adelgid.

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