Identification: Spruce ID

Discussion in 'Gymnosperms (incl. Conifers)' started by Nik, Nov 1, 2020.

  1. Nik

    Nik Well-Known Member

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    Can anyone help me identify the species of spruce in our yard? I am trying to figure out if someone planted a Christmas tree long time ago, or if it is a naturally occurring species in area. I have not seen any others in the vicinity of our house. It is shaded heavily by nearby large trees and I have never seen cones on it. The needles are rather delicate. Last two pictures show the underside of a branch.
     

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  2. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @Nik good afternoon N. I think you are right Picea abies or Norway spruce. I think someone planted their Christmas tree.
     
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  3. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Agree with Norway Spruce Picea abies. Looks like it is suffering from lack of light with all those surrounding trees; it is unlikely to produce any cones until it can get its head up into the sun.
     
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  4. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Will never produce an attractive specimen unless something is done to open up the planting site adequately.
     
  5. Sulev

    Sulev Active Member

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    Norway spruce is pretty tolerant to the shade, it must be something else there, why the tree is so weak. Possibly its roots are in bad shape or the soil is too wet/dry.
    It has hardly been a Christmas tree, as it is bent from low part of the stem.
     
  6. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    It'll survive in shade (and grow perhaps 10-20 cm per year in height), but it won't thrive (grow 30-60 cm per year, and produce cones). Hard to know about the stem straightness - we can't see the bottom of the trunk. Maybe it was planted out as a 1 metre christmas tree, and the stem bends are higher up, and caused by poor growth after its christmas house-heat shock.
     
  7. Sulev

    Sulev Active Member

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    From what is visible from the first photo, there is not too dark for spuce. In the forest spruce can grow nicely in much darker conditions, even if its crown is growing into another tree's crown. The shape of the tree's crown top is pretty sharp, unlike of those spruces, that are struggling in the extreme poor light conditions (their top is blunt, trees are growing more into width than into height), but its needles are weak like of those underdogs.
     
  8. Nik

    Nik Well-Known Member

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    Here is a photo from further away. The tree is about 20 ft high. There is some damage to the lower trunk by a male white tail deer, which was rubbing its head/antlers in it last year. Sadly we will have the more than 100 ft tall tulip poplar (marked with dark pink band) in front of it removed later this fall.
     

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  9. Sulev

    Sulev Active Member

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    From the last photo it seems, that the soil there is pretty rocky and the lower part of the spruce's stem has got some damage. Usually spruce can handle such light conditions, that I can see from the photo - it seems, that from the camera's side, there is pretty large distance between the spruce and neighbouring trees. It should have been in pretty good side light even before the large tree was removed.

    If this large tree was removed recently, then it is expected, that light conditions improved considerably, and the spruce should recover.
    As a forester I was teached, that until spruce's side branches are not longer than the top, then the tree can benefit from improved light conditions. If branches are longer than the top, then it is almost impossible to grow healthy tree from it.
     

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