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Caucasian spruce Picea orientalis

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
PY-see-uh or-ee-en-TAY-liss
Description

A dense, compact, narrow pyramid evergreen with short ascending, horizontal or pendulous branches that extend to the ground.  It will grow in a variety of soil types, including poor fertility areas.  A cool climate plant that will not do well in areas of heat and humidity.  It is best to protect from harsh winter winds. 

The needles of the male are reddish, with strawberry-shaped cones.  Female cones are 2-4" long and 1" wide, reddish-purple when the tree is young.  As the tree matures, they will turn brown. 

Drought tolerant when mature, young trees need to be watered on a regular basis.

Potential problems include needle cast, cankers, bagworms and mites.

Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Aurea'
    Bright yellow new growth
  • 'Gowdy'
    Narrow, slow growing
  • 'Gracilis'
  • 'Skylands'
    New foiliage is yellow. Color will fade in summer, needles may burn in hot climates.
Tags:
#evergreen#drought tolerant#acidic soil#conifer#winter interest#rabbit resistant#playground#clay tolerant#buffer#alkaline soil#infertile soil#deer resistant#children's garden#gravelley soil#screening
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Aurea'
    Bright yellow new growth
  • 'Gowdy'
    Narrow, slow growing
  • 'Gracilis'
  • 'Skylands'
    New foiliage is yellow. Color will fade in summer, needles may burn in hot climates.
Tags:
#evergreen#drought tolerant#acidic soil#conifer#winter interest#rabbit resistant#playground#clay tolerant#buffer#alkaline soil#infertile soil#deer resistant#children's garden#gravelley soil#screening
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Picea
    Species:
    orientalis
    Family:
    Pinaceae
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Asia minor
    Wildlife Value:
    Browsers, Nesting birds, Songbirds. Winter cover for deer and small game.
    Play Value:
    Buffer
    Pieces Used in Games
    Screening
    Dimensions:
    Height: 50 ft. 0 in. - 60 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 15 ft. 0 in. - 20 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Tree
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Dense
    Pyramidal
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12-24 feet
    NC Region:
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Length:
    > 3 inches
    Fruit Width:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    Cones, reddish-purple when young, turn brown when mature
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gold/Yellow
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Description:
    Inconspicuous
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Needles
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Other/more complex
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Dark green/black, tightly set, 4-sided, 1 to 4 lines on each side
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Surface/Attachment:
    Exfoliating
    Patchy
    Ridges
    Bark Description:
    Smooth. Cracked into small rounded plates with age.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Lawn
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Recreational Play Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Children's Garden
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Screen/Privacy
    Shade Tree
    Specimen
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Poor Soil