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PICEA pungens 'Fastigiata'

Image of Picea pungens 'Fastigiata'

James H. Schutte

Family

Pinaceae

Botanical Name

PICEA pungens 'Fastigiata'

Plant Common Name

Colorado Spruce, Column Blue Spruce

Special Notice

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

General Description

This superior columnar spruce is a dwarf and perfectly sized for small gardens. It’s ideal for the intermountain West, Upper Midwest and Canadian landscapes because its parent species is the Colorado spruce tree native to higher elevations of the Rockies. Within its range the winters are very cold and dry, making 'Fastigiata' quite drought tolerant. With a tidy form, its upward facing branches and dense foliage becomes a living column that’s outstanding under snow. The branches are sheathed in scaly purple-tinged gray bark and short, four sided dark blue-gray needles. The new growth is intensely blue, fading to blue green as it ages. The needles are prickly and quite stiff to the touch. Small to medium sized brown cones are formed at the tips.

A columnar dwarf spruce is valuable for creating architectural forms in the landscape. It’s ideal as a cold hardy substitute for the tender Italian cypress. Plant in pairs to flank a view or entry. Use as a contrast plant in mixed shrub borders. Provide this spruce with full sun and protection from drying winter winds, which can burn or discolor the foliage, spoiling its perfect form. Group with other arid natives from cold regions for water conserving landscape designs, Mediterranean style landscapes, naturalistic gardens or foundation plantings. This selection is also known as 'Iseli Fastigiate'.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    7 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    2 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    A2, A3, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17

  • Plant Type

    Needled or Scaled Evergreen

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    5'-6' / 1.5m - 1.8m

  • Width

    1'-2' / 0.3m - 0.6m

  • Native To

    Western United States

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Pollution, Drought, Salt

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Narrow Upright/Fastigiate

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    None

  • Fruit Color

    Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Blue Green, Steel Blue

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Blue Green, Steel Blue

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Blue Green, Steel Blue

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Blue Green, Steel Blue

  • Bark Color

    Gray

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    Yes

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    Yes

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Fissured

  • Usage

    Container, Feature Plant, Foundation, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall, Screening / Wind Break

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    Yes

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No