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Dwarf Alberta Spruces

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A Spruce Cone

The Dwarf Alberta Spruce is a small, slow-growing evergreen tree that looks like a soft, cuddly, teddy-bear of an evergreen. It has won popularity for its resilience, while lending 'an extremely fine and delicate texture to landscape composition" with its pyramidal, Christmas-tree-like shape'.

It will fit well in compact gardens, but also look good in planters or along driveways. Its maximum height after 30 years will be about 12 or 13 feet. For guidance in putting it in the best possible spot, you may wish to consult the h2g2 Entry Principles of Landscape Design.

It should be grown in moist, well-drained soils and located where it can receive full sun. It can tolerate some light shade, and prefers cold winter climates with cool summers.

Put it where it can get good air circulation to help rid the dense foliage of moisture. Leave at least three feet between the spruce and other plants or structures. The hole where you plant it should be twice as wide as the container the tree came in.

Some parts of the UK may not have cold enough winters to really suit it, and yet parts of the US that have comparably mild winters seem to suit it fine. There are parts of Florida and Alabama where, with proper care and siting, it can do all right.

Dealing with Problems

  • Winter burn: Plant it on the northeast or east side of a building or in a protected courtyard, so winter winds don't dry out the needles.

  • Spider mites: The tell-tale sign of this is browning needles. Although there are sprays that can be used to control the mites, good results can be had by hosing the trees down periodically with a strong spray of water to wash the mites away.

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