This is a genus of around 35 species of conifers. With the exception of the dwarf cultivars, spruces are rigidly upright, pyramidal in form with stiff, prickly needles that emerge individually from the stem. They bear pendant cones (the hang down from the branch).

Although they are often seen in home landscapes, the spruces are often a disappointment. Individual specimens may work well but they tend to be very large trees at maturity requiring a lot of space. The Colorado blue spruce is probably most often used but it has serious problems as they age. The Norway spruce is commonly used in Europe.

Spruce trees are often confused with fir trees which are members of the genus, Abies. Generally speaking, they are both trees that have single needles coming directly from the stem. The needles of spruces tend to be stiff and prickly to the touch while those of the fir are softer.

Copyright © 2000 -