Dwarf Colorado Blue Spruce

kmack17(6 NJ)June 14, 2012

Hello, I'm redesigning some of my landscape and really love Colorado Blue Spruce trees, but I don't think a 50'+ tree is going to work for me. Does anyone have any recommendations for something similar that won't get nearly as tall. Depending on where I decide to plant the tree (or trees) the tallest I would want them to get is either 10' or 15'. They would get full sun and be in well drained loamy soil.

My own research has led me to a variety of Picea pungens (Baby Blue, Egyptian Pyramid, Fat Albert, Hoopsii, Sester Dwarf), but I'm getting conflicting information on them from questionable sources online.

Thanks for your help.

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

intro to conifers at link ...

study the stuff on annual growth rates ...

its all about how fast it grows to a given height.. AND RIGHT PAST IT .. as trees.. they basically NEVER stop growing ...

MOST tag and online ESTIMATES are at 10 years.. divide by ten.. and you have their GUESS on its annual growth rate..

at 20 years.. it will be twice as big ...

hoopsi is out ... pic of mine below ... from a one gallon one foot size .. as is probably FAlbert

besides noting height.. you havent told us the space available for the footprint ...

ken

Here is a link that might be useful: intro to conifers

    Bookmark   June 14, 2012 at 2:13PM
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kmack17(6 NJ)

Thanks for the info. The width of the tree is less of a concern for me. Since I'm starting this section of the landscape over from scratch I'm pretty flexible with how I can plant them. I think planting 2 trees that would grow to be 10' high and maybe 4-5' wide would be ideal. How talls was yours in this pic from 2008?

    Bookmark   June 14, 2012 at 3:11PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

presume the growth from 2007 to 2008 was 18 inches ... its annual growth rate.. and you can figure it out ...

at the link i gave you .. hit the link to coniferbase .. type hoopsi in the cultivar name box.. and read up ... it says.. greater than 12 inches per year...

and it says.. 15 feet at 10 years ... and 12 inches by 15 years is.. get this.. 180 inches.. divided by 10 .. ipso presto bingo ... 18 inches per year ... [though the first year or two.. it might not hit that mark.. until 'fully established']

sooooo.... 5 years.. according to the pic ... at 18 inches per year.. gives you ... well.. half the ten year prediction.. or 7 to 8 feet ...

ken

ps: and just to bring this all full circle.. one of the pix at the dB.. gives .. wait for it.. a different annual growth rate.. and prediction.. rotflmbo ....

    Bookmark   June 14, 2012 at 4:04PM
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kmack17(6 NJ)

Thanks, that conifer base has the kind of information I'm looking for.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2012 at 5:26PM
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dcsteg(5 Shawnee, KS.)

'Sester Dwarf'

With one-fourth the growth rate of its big brother this would probably fit your confines. At the very manimun 6 inches a year.

This one about 12 years old. Main leader grew 6 inches while side branch growth limited to 4 inches this year. 5 ft tall.

Growth rate variances will depend upon soil, micro climate, sun and adequate water. Only maximum growth will occur if all the above needs fall within the plants average needs.

Dave

    Bookmark   June 14, 2012 at 6:03PM
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greenhaven(SW MI z6)

Dave that Sester's Dwarf is gorgeous. What is the pendula behind it? Needle color is amazing!

    Bookmark   June 14, 2012 at 6:36PM
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dcsteg(5 Shawnee, KS.)

greenhaven,

That conifer was purchase 12 years ago with the cultivar name of 'Pendula. I was a newbie and did not question the name.

I came to find out later it is Picea omorika 'Gotelli Weeeping' instead of 'Pendula'

I moved it 6 years ago to its present location. It is my understanding Picea omorika don't like to be moved when established. I am lucky it did not die. It was very slow to recover.

Dave

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 7:42AM
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mmajicmann(5b)

i have a beautiful Picea pungens glauca 'Baby Blueeyes' that grows a mere 4-5" per year which might be a perfect 'dwarf' colorado spruce for you.

Here is a link that might be useful: 'Baby Blueeyes'

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 10:06AM
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greenhaven(SW MI z6)

Thank you, Dave. I think I am fast becoming a fan of anything with omorika in the species slot. :o)

How fast a grower is that one? I am already imagining more and more areas to be planting conifers. You can sneak them into all sorts of places!

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 11:24AM
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kmack17(6 NJ)

I have a feeling I'll be planting a lot of conifers by the time I'm done. Is it reasonable to expect either a Sester Dwarf or Baby Blue Eyes to get to be 6-8' tall in a few years? I guess it would depend on how large of a tree I plant, but any advice would help.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:43PM
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mmajicmann(5b)

4 footer purchased will be 7 feet tall in about 6 years...give or take... i hope you're not an accountant ;)

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 4:15PM
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kmack17(6 NJ)

Nope, not an accountant, but I can do simple arithmetic. I was hoping someone might have some first hand experience with either of the two varities and I could get a little more information than what's contained on a fact sheet.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 5:44PM
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skyjumper

hey ken do you have an updated pic of your hoopsii? i'd love to see what it looks like now.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2012 at 12:22AM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

I think planting 2 trees that would grow to be 10' high and maybe 4-5' wide would be ideal.

You have to go with a columnar tree if you need to maintain that width. Perhaps 'Blue Totem' would be a better choice. It will exceed 10' tall at some point.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2012 at 9:06AM
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