Botanical Name: Picea abies
Common Name: Norway Spruce
Origin: N. & E. Europe
Location: CNE, CNW, CSW, CPL20, KN
Notable Feature: Its dense branching pattern, low maintenance, and tolerance of soil variations have made it a popular tree for windbreaks.
Habit: The fastest growing of the spruces, this needled conifer is upright and pyramidal and will reach 40 to 50 feet in height. In the wild it attains heights of 100 to 150 feet.
Flower: Monoecious (separate male and female flowers on the same tree); males yellow-brown in large groups; females upright, purple.
Fruit: Yields light brown, stiffly scaled, 4 to 7-inch cones that sit upright on the branch until fertilized. Once fertilized, they gradually turn downward, maturing in fall.
Foliage: Bright green new growth, ages to dark blue-green. Needles are roughly ½ to 1" in length and feel square when rolled between your fingers.
Interesting Fact: The Norway spruce hails from Europe and while this species grows in Norway, the common name is a bit misleading. This tree grew in Eurasia, the Black Forest, and other parts of the continent long before making its way to Norway around 500 B.C. As people emigrated, they often brought trees with them from the Old Country to plant as ornamentals on new homesteads.