Can this dwarf alberta spruce be saved?

dedtiredJune 15, 2012

Hi. I also posted this on Trees, so please forgive the double post. I've had this tree in a pot for about 2.5 years. I planned to plant it in the ground but discovered a birds nest, so I waited until they left the nest. In the meantime, the tree looked lie it was dying. I figured it was a goner and was ready to get rid of it. Here's how it looks, although not sideways (continued below):

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However, upon closer inspection, I found these green tips on the branches. So, if I plant it in the ground, is there a reasonably good chance it will survive? Any thoughts?

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:30PM
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thisismelissa(z4a-S Twin Cities MN)

IMO, DAS are junk. They need way to much babying to not get dried out in a midwestern winter.

I've removed 3 of them in the last 10 years and another one will come out yet this year.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:47PM
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I'm outside of Philadelphia. Our winters range from none (this year) to brutal (last year). Do you think it's not worth digging a hole and planting this?

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 9:19PM
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botann(z8 SEof Seattle)

Yes, it will live....if you water it after you put it in the ground. I believe more Dwarf Alberta Spruces are killed in pots than any other tree. It's been barely living a life on the way too dry side. Once in the ground it will look bad for a long time, we're talking years, before it will fill in.... given proper placement and care.
I'd throw it away and not look back.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 9:36PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

get rid of it..

its not a question of whether it will live.. or recover

its a question of how long it is going to be.. before it looks good again.. and that could be 3 to 5 years.. for a TREE that you can replace for under 10 bucks ...

and do mind.. ITS A TREE.. otherwise known as a conifer.. and its root system.. should be as big.. if not double.. the size of what you see above..

and when you wrap your head around that.. and look at the pot its in.. you should be able to fully understand.. what its root problem is [pun intended] ....

but for bonsai ... trees do not have a long life potential in pots...

divest for sure ..


    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 8:05AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

while ruminating on this ...

i would bet a shiny nickel .. that there is no media in that pot ... its all roots

and therefore.. there is nothing to hold water for the tree ...


    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 10:14AM
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I knew the tree could not survive in a pot for long. It was about half this size when I got it. My plan was to move it when it outgrew the pot, but the birds nest foiled that plan. It had no brown at all when I found the nest. At first I thought it was the nest that was killing the tree.

I agree that it's not worth saving. That's why I do not keep indoor plants. They always look half dead (at least many do), and I have a hard time chucking them. I try to nurse them back to health and they look like hell in the process.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 11:19AM
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stick it in the woods (ok it needs sun) and give it the chance it never had... despite its abuse, it's been holding on to a little thing called... life. i disagree that "DAB"s are 'junk' and that you can get a 3 footer (retail) for 'under 10 bucks'.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 11:52AM
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Oh too late. I cut it down and threw it in the compost heap. The compost pile is in the woods, so it did end up there. I still have to pry the stump out of the pot.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 8:11PM
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