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LARIX laricina 'Blue Sparkler'

Image of Larix laricina 'Blue Sparkler'

Family

Pinaceae

Botanical Name

LARIX laricina 'Blue Sparkler'

Plant Common Name

Blue Sparkler Eastern Larch, Eastern Larch

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

Brightening the landscape with a dense foliar display of light blue-green needles, Blue Sparkler dwarf tamarack also heralds fall with golden yellow needles. Native to much of Canada and the extreme northern United States, this variety was selected by Sid Waxman of the University of Connecticut. It is a vigorous, dwarfed, deciduous shrub that will become broader than tall.

The needles are bright blue-green, short, three-sided and arranged densely in spiral clusters atop short stubby spurs. The thin, young branchlets are held up and out from the plant so that they look like ghostly blue sparkler candles as they are covered in needles. The male and female cones appear on the branchlets in late spring, and the female cones that develop after pollination are quite small, egg-shaped, tan, and remain through the winter and following spring. The return of cool nights in late summer will find the foliage turning yellow and gold.

Provide a full sun exposure for the Blue Sparkler tamarack and place it in a moist, well-draining, acidic soil. It is tolerant of wet, boggy soils as well. Often difficult to locate in the nursery trade, it will be encountered only in regions with very cold winters and cool summers. It resents shade, root disturbance, drought and pollution and therefore is best used as an undisturbed specimen in the mixed border. It responds well to shearing.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    5 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    1 - 4

  • Sunset Zone

    A1, A2, A3, 1a, 1b, 2a

  • Plant Type

    Needled or Scaled Evergreen

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    6'-10' / 1.8m - 3.0m

  • Width

    8'-12' / 2.4m - 3.7m

  • Bloom Time

    Late Spring

  • Native To

    North America, North-Central United States, Western United States, Canada

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam

  • Tolerances

    Wet Site

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Spreading

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Green, Purple

  • Fruit Color

    Tan, Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Sea Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Sea Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Yellow, Gold

  • Bark Color

    Sandy Brown, Gray

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    Yes

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Fissured

  • Usage

    Bog Garden, Container, Feature Plant, Foundation, Hedges, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No