pruning an albert spruce to maintain height

Discussion in 'Gymnosperms (incl. Conifers)' started by eunice.roughton, Jun 1, 2006.

  1. eunice.roughton

    eunice.roughton Member

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    Re: Pruning Fat Albert Spruce

    [SEARCH][/SEARCH]A nursery told me after I bought a fat albert if I pruned it I would kill it. I do not want it to get more than 15 feet high because of where I am puting it. She also told me it is hard to keep alive. I am putting it at the side of a water fall.
     
  2. eunice.roughton

    eunice.roughton Member

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    Re: Pruning Fat Albert Spruce

    So can you prun the fat albert and not kill it? Can it be kept at 6 feet tall and 4 feet around? And is it hard to keep alive?
     
  3. Dixie

    Dixie Active Member

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    Re: Pruning Fat Albert Spruce

    not hard, but are very prone to spider mites. also, for some reason dogs really like to hike their leg on them which makes them look really ugly after repeat visits.
     
  4. eunice.roughton

    eunice.roughton Member

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    Re: Pruning Fat Albert Spruce

    Is it hard to fight the spider mites. I have a small dog. Just bought this tree for the back of my pond and trying to decide if it was a good move or not. Thank you for your input.
    Eunice
     
  5. Raakel

    Raakel Active Member

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    Hello,

    If height is your concern I don't think that you have a problem. Nurseries usually sell dwarf Albert spruce (Picea glauca `Conica'). If this is the plant that you have purchased it will not reach much more than 6 feet high. As for pruning, none required. It will maintain its conical shape without any attention.

    Spider mites usually become problematic in hot dry conditions. Monitor your plant. If you begin to see the needles turning a bronze colour you may have spider mites. You can also tap a branch above a white piece of paper and look for the mites. If you maintain a healthy plant it will be less susceptible to attack. This is the best preventative measure.

    Raakel
     
  6. jimmyq

    jimmyq Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    the shape of these plants allow for shearing, this can be done to manage the height over time.
     
  7. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    'Fat Albert' is a blue Colorado spruce, not a dwarf ('Conica') Alberta spruce.
     
  8. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Esteemed Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    That'd be my fault - I moved the original posts from a different thread and titled it poorly.
     
  9. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    I think with all this the question about the ultimate height and possible pruning of a Fat Albert blue spruce has not been answered. Adrian Bloom's book Gardening with Conifers gives its ten-year height as 8-10 feet, with an ultimate height of 50 feet or more. If you have long term plans for it as a smaller tree it will need pruning, and if you cut the leader the shape will not remain conical. The principles of pruning are not specific to this cultivar of tree; they would be common to all spruces and many conifers. Perhaps if you read some pruning books about pruning evergreens you will find some information that will help you if you do decide to try to control the size of the tree.
     
  10. tribes

    tribes Member

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    Re: Pruning Fat Albert Spruce

    Realistically? Probably not. Fat Albert wants to slowly grow large. Picea pungens 'Sester Dwarf' is the plant you are probably looking for. Check out the Iseli site for a photo.

    If you are looking for something blue that will hover around this 6'x4' in a 10-15 year timespan, try a Blue Alberta Spruce. Picea Glauca Conica Sanders Blue or Picea Glauca Conica Blue Wonder are two that I know of. Both are very slow growing and will provide the greyish blue you are probably looking for. They will not be "shiner" blue like a Fat Albert, Hoopsi, or RH Montgomery, but may be an option.
     

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