Table of contents:
- Read the previous part of the article: Growing evergreens in your garden
- Types and varieties of spruce
Video: Ate In Your Garden
Read the previous part of the article: Growing evergreens in your garden
The spruce is characterized by a conical crown with whorled branches located on the trunk. Among the spruces there are both dwarfs barely reaching a meter in height, for example, the gray spruce (Picea glauca), the Albertiana Conica variety, and giants up to 15 m and more in height, such as the Serbian spruce (Picea omorica). Like fir, spruce has narrow, single leaves, and the two are sometimes confused. But they are easy to distinguish if you look at the leafless branch: in the fir, depressed scars are visible on the branches, and in the spruce, nail-like protrusions.
It is even easier to distinguish these plants by cones: fir cones stick up, and spruce cones are always hanging. Not all ate trees look like a Christmas tree - among them there are weeping trees and squat plants not only with green, but also with blue or golden needles. Its short, tough and often sharp leaves are narrower than those of fir, and they are needle-like rather than belt-shaped.
At the end of the branch, the needles are usually thicker than at the base. Ate is often praised for being unpretentious. Indeed, almost all adult ate grows well in cold, moist soils, but some suffer from unfavorable conditions at a young age. When planting them, dry, covered soils should be avoided - only Serbian spruce grows on calcareous soil, and the rest of the species need neutral or acidic soil. Any garden soil other than lime soil is suitable for spruce; this plant prefers the sun. Spruce is propagated by seedlings.
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Types and varieties of spruce
The most famous common spruce (Picea abies) is a familiar New Year tree. This plant is not for the garden - an attractive conical young tree over the years often stretches and becomes columnar. It is better to buy not the original wild-growing species, but one of its varieties. For example, the variety Nidiformis has a flat-topped bush-like crown with horizontal tiers of branches; the height of an adult plant does not exceed one meter.
The Reflexa spruce forms a highly spreading, creeping bush and can be used as a ground cover.
The Asgosona variety has weeping branches with bright red male cones at the ends. If you are looking for a tall spruce with a narrow conical crown, the best choice is the Serbian spruce (Picea omorika). In rock gardens, the most often grown gray spruce (Picea glauca) variety Albertiana Conica with a dense conical crown, which grows only up to 1 m in height in 10 years. Perhaps the most spectacular is the Picea breweriana, with a wide, conical crown and weeping twigs. This tree grows up to 12 m, but at the age of ten its height does not exceed 1.5 m.
If we talk not about the shape of the crown, but about the color of the foliage, then in this sense the prickly spruce (Picea pungens), or the blue spruce, which is represented by several varieties, is unmatched. The most popular variety is Koster - a conical tree up to 7.5 m high with silver-blue needles. The lightest blue needles are from Hoopsii. To obtain a perfect conical crown, young trees of both of these varieties must be tied up in the early years. Not all blue spruces have a conical crown. Globosa has a spherical crown, and Glauca Prostrata has a ground cover. For a rock garden, a black spruce (Picea mariana) variety Nana is perfect - a dwarf tree no more than 30 cm high with a dense spherical crown. There are very few spruce with yellow needles - the choice is limited to two varieties of tall columnar oriental spruce (Picea orientalis): this is the Aurea,which only has yellow young leaves, and the Skylands variety, whose needles retain their golden color all year round.
Gray spruce Canadian grade Conica
Its dwarf conical shape is squat, with an obovate crown.
The branches are raised, tightly pressed against each other, thin, light or dark brown. The needles are radial and densely spaced, soft, thin, light green, 3-6 mm long.
Height 3-4 meters, crown diameter two meters. Annual growth is 6–10 cm in height and 3–5 cm spread.
In culture since 1847, it is now widely cultivated in Estonia and Lithuania.
Used for single landings, in groups, rock gardens. It is decorative due to its regular, conical crown.
Poorly tolerates soil compaction and waterlogging.
Spruce ordinary black grade Echiniformis
Dwarf, slow-growing form, reaching 20 cm in height and 40 cm in width.
The crown is cushion-shaped, unevenly developed in different directions. Shoots are light brown, glabrous, slightly shiny, tough, relatively thick.
Annual growth is 15-20 mm.
The buds are light brown, large, cylindrical, rounded. The needles of the plant are needle-like, hard, 0.5-1 cm long. The color of the needles is yellow-green or gray-green. The lower needles are flat with a short sharp tip, the upper needles are stellate, located under the terminal cone.
Does not tolerate stagnant water and dry soil.
In culture, this plant has been known since 1875. Propagated by seeds and grafting.
Recommended for group and single plantings in groups, rock gardens, for growing in containers, for landscaping balconies and roofs.
Spruce black grade Nana
A dwarf plant, the shape of the crown is round, the shoots are tender, the needles are very thin, bluish gray, short.
The maximum height at the age of ten is approximately 30 cm.
The maximum crown diameter at the same age is 0.8 m.
Partial shade is better for her.
This plant is not very demanding on the soil, it is frost-resistant, it is used for small backyard and rocky gardens, heather gardens.
Colorado spruce varieties F. Glauca
A large tree with a beautiful, regular, conical crown, reaching 10-15 m at the age of 30. The branches are rigid, growing at right angles from the trunk.
The needles are tough, blue-green to silvery, prickly. With age, the spruce nevertheless acquires a silvery-blue color. This is the so-called "blue spruce".
Spruce is very undemanding to soil and moisture. It has high resistance to environmental pollution. Recommended for single plantings, garden compositions.
In the past century, in our country, it was often possible to meet her planted near Soviet and party institutions - district committees, regional committees, executive committees.
Norway spruce grade Nidiformis
Height 1.2 m, crown diameter 2.5 m.
The crown is cushion-shaped, flattened, which is obtained in the form of a nest due to obliquely growing shoots from the middle of the plant and the absence of main branches. The branches grow evenly, fan-shaped. Numerous shoots.
Annual growth is 3–4 cm in height, 5–8 cm in width. The needles are short, needle-like, hard, sharp, bright green.
Does not tolerate stagnant water and dry soil. It is very hardy, but at a young age it can suffer from spring frosts.
The form was obtained in 1904 in the nursery Rulemann Grisson (Hamburg).
The name was given by Beisner in 1906.
It is very effective in single plantings, in groups, on rocky hills.
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Norway spruce grade Ohlendorffii
Dwarf plant, height 6-8 m, crown diameter 2.5-4 m, at a young age the crown is round, by old age it is broadly conical with several tops.
Shoots ascending and spreading, unevenly developed, densely located in the crown. Annual growth 2-6 cm. Buds are dark, orange-brown, located in groups at the ends of the shoots. The needles are golden-yellowish-green, short, prickly, outwardly reminiscent of the needles of the eastern spruce.
This spruce was obtained in T. Olendorff's nursery near Hamburg from seeds in the middle of the 19th century. The seeds were brought from the Nikitsky Botanical Garden.
Propagated by seeds and cuttings. Does not tolerate stagnant water, salinity and dryness of the soil. Shade tolerant.
Recommended for single and group landings. In containers, it can be used to green roofs, balconies, underground passages.
Spruce Canadian blue grade Sanders Blue
The shape of the crown of the spruce is conical, the color of the needles is bluish-gray.
The maximum height at the age of ten is 0.7 m, the maximum diameter is 0.5 m.
It is photophilous, frost-hardy, the soil should be of medium moisture, neutral, light or medium loam is suitable.
Dwarf spruce, used in group and single plantings, on rocky hills.
Read the next part of the article: Cypress trees in your garden
Evergreens in your garden:
• Part 1. Evergreens in your garden
• Part 2. Arranging evergreens in your garden
• Part 3. Growing evergreens in your garden
• Part 4. Eating in your garden
• Part 5. Cypress in your garden
• Part 6 Junipers in your garden
• Part 7. Rhododendron, azalea and boxwood in your garden
• Part 8. Pines and yews in your garden
• Part 9. Thuja in your garden
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