The Colorado Blue Spruce
Classification: Picea Pungens
The Colorado Blue Spruce was discovered growing on Pikes Peak in 1862 by a botanist named C.C. Perry. The news of this magnificent tree spread quickly and the tree was loved by many and well sought after. On March 7, 1939, the Blue Spruce was adopted by resolution of the General Assembly as its very own State Tree- The Colorado Blue Spruce.
The Colorado Blue Spruce has a silvery, blue-green coloring and creates light-brown cones on it. It is exactly what someone would picture as a Christmas tree- very full and widespread at the bottom and fluffy all the way up the pyramid-shape it makes towards the top. These trees form a spire at the very top which is great for a shining Star or a beautiful Angel to be placed. Some people use them as Christmas trees and others plant them in their yards or in front of their office buildings as a piece for all to admire.
Type, Design, Attributes:
It is an evergreen tree and keeps its foliage (needles) all year long. It is considered a conifer tree because of its cones on the branches. These light-brown cones grow to be approximately 3”- 4” and hang down from its branches. Its colored needles are stiff, and prickly which grow to be
1”- 1½” long. This spruce has some of the longest and deepest roots of the spruces which make it a very long-standing tree.
This tree prefers planting zones 2-7 and grows best in extremely high elevations. It requires a place that has full sun exposure (at least 6 hours of full sun per day). Its planting soil may vary from acidic, loamy, moist, rich, sandy, well-drained and clay soils. It can withstand a medium amount of drought and flooding. If properly planted and tended to, this tree can grow 12” – 24” per year. The Colorado Blue Spruces can grow to be 50' – 115' feet tall!
Wildlife & The Colorado Blue Spruce:
The spruce provides shelter for siskins, nuthatches and crossbills.