Stalwarts of the landscapes of the Northern United States, Spruce trees have come to perform many practical and ornamental functions in both residential and commercial landscapes. With their typically dense growth habits, they provide excellent visual screens as well as wind breaks. This dense branching and foliage is also attractive to wildlife who uses it for cover from predators and the elements.
Spruce almost always prefer full sun exposure, but their demands for moisture and soil types can vary. Most all prefer a well-drained soil but can perform well in soils with higher clay content as well.
Transplanting spruce is best done in early spring, mid-summer or fall, specifically avoiding the period when new growth candles are pushing out and are yet to harden off. Much like the blooming season of deciduous trees, this is the most stressful time for a spruce, and trying to dig a tree for transplant during this time greatly increases the odds of plant mortality. Pruning on the Spruce should be relatively minimal and focused mainly on maintaining the shape of the tree. Most Spruce do not respond well to hard pruning back or renovation pruning.
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