Pruning Fat Albert Spruce

Discussion in 'Gymnosperms (incl. Conifers)' started by Robert, Jun 23, 2004.

  1. Robert

    Robert Member

    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Normal, IL
    I have a Fat Albert 10' high and 4plus feet in diameter. I want to maintain it at this size. Will it be ok to prune to this size each fall?
     
  2. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,424
    Likes Received:
    18
    Location:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Hi Robert:

    Fat Albert is one of the Blue Spruce that really does not require
    or really need any training or pruning. I would suggest you leave
    the tree alone. Fat Albert is a semi-dwarf for a Picea pungens. If
    your tree is already 10' tall then before it gets to about 12-15' tall
    it will start to widen much more than it is now. Generally, a 10'
    tall tree should be about 8' wide. It is a compact, blocky tree
    (that is how it got its name) which grows almost as wide as it is
    tall. I've seen a few examples of this Spruce that were actually
    wider than they are tall.

    Jim
     
  3. The original Fat Albert spruce propagated by Iseli nurseries is now 25 years old and is 30 feet high. Even though it is marketed as a dwarf variety, it really hasn't been around long enough to know how high it will actually get.
     
  4. what is it's adaptations?
     
  5. ksp1955

    ksp1955 Member

    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    cincinnati
    I know you indicate that the Fat Albert Spruce doesn't have to be pruned but is there harm in trimming to keep to a smaller height (want to limit to 10 wide by 10-12 high).
     
  6. Daniel Mosquin

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

    Messages:
    9,926
    Likes Received:
    325
    Location:
    Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Sounds like you have the wrong plant for the location. See Douglas Justice's response in this thread advising against topping conifers.
     
  7. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

    Messages:
    20,101
    Likes Received:
    285
    Location:
    WA USA (Z8)
    Whole thing can be sheared lightly each year to slow annual increase. However, this will not stop growth entirely and will also tend to produce an appearance like that of a sheared Christmas tree.
     
  8. KarinL

    KarinL Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    1,058
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Vancouver
    With all due respect, DJ's response is about a tree 90' high, this is about one at 10'. Sounds like indeed wrong tree for wrong place, but what to do now?

    First of all it is your tree, and so it is "OK" for you to play around with pruning it as it suits you. Chances are the tree will survive but might not look that tree-like; might be shrubby, might form multiple leaders, or other responses. Once a tree is leaderless it can become unstable and unsightly if pruning is not consistently repeated, I'm not sure I would leave such a thing behind for a future owner; might plan to take it down before I moved.
     

Share This Page