Spruce Super Blue: Description, Planting And Care, Propagation

Fir trees have been very popular with landscape designers for many years. The most common choice is the Super Blue Sidling Spruce, which has won prizes in various competitions on numerous occasions. This tree is highly decorative: its conical crown consists of branches covered in bright blue needles.

Origin

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

Super Blue Spruce is native to southwest North America, where it is called "Picea pungens Super Blue Seedling". In nature, it prefers to grow on rocky mountains.

The word combination "Picea pungens" translates as "prickly spruce" and "Super Blue Seedling" in Russian sounds like "super blue seedling"

This extraordinarily beautiful spruce was born thanks to the efforts of Canadian plant breeders. And this variety came into being not as a result of grafting, but it was grown from seed. Because of this, the cost of such a conifer is somewhat lower compared to other blue spruces.

Special features of Super Blue Spruce

Description

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

The characteristic feature of Super Blue Spruce is a lush slender crown without baldness, possessing a rich color. It is because of its spectacular appearance that this tree takes a place of honor among other conifers.

This conifer is among the most graceful models of the Christmas tree. It has thin, pale brown bark on the surface of its not very large trunk. The branches are arranged horizontally in a circle, so that the crown has a tiered structure. The initial crown is narrow-conical but over the years it changes to cylindrical, with the color of the needles becoming brighter and deeper.

Hollow needles are stiff and sharpened at the tip.

They are about 30 mm long. Depending on the environment in which the tree grows, they can appear pale blue, green or sky-blue in color.

The branches form resinous cones that are about 10 centimeters in size. When young, they are pale red in color, but become brown as they mature. They are covered with lamellar scales, under which are small seeds about 0.

3-0.4 cm in size, which are black peas.

Super Blue is more ornamental than the well-known Siberian spruce. But at the same time, Super Blue has a lower frost-resistance. The longevity of such a tree is strongly influenced by its geographical location.

For example, in North America this spruce is able to live about 700 years, and in Russia - 50-70 years.

Size

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

This kind of spruce differs very fast growth. In 12 months, it becomes about 30 cm taller and about 15 cm wider. At the age of thirty years, it grows to the height of approximately 15 meters.

Frost hardiness

This coniferous plant is able to stand quite low air temperatures.

It does not fear severe frosts up to minus 35 degrees.

Planting in the open air

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

Site selection

The Super Blue Spruce grows best in a well-lit and open area. However, you can also choose a place with a little shade to plant the plant. When choosing a place, it should be taken into account that depending on the growing conditions, the color of the crown can change. If the light is too sparse, the needles lose their beautiful blue hue and become green.

For planting such a conifer, the site on which corn or potatoes were previously grown is not suitable. The fact is that this can cause the spruce to be affected by various fungal diseases.

This tree has minimal requirements for growing conditions, and it grows well in almost any soil. However, it grows best in loamy or sandy soil. Also experts advise, give preference to a loose light and slightly acidic soil.

Adding ammonium sulfate to the soil will increase its acidity. The optimum level of acidity for such a plant is 4,5-5,8.

Planting rules

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

For Super Blue to adapt better to its new location after planting, the following instructions should be followed:

  1. April and May are best for planting.
  2. Prepare a planting hole which can vary in size from 0.5 to 0.

    8 m (depending on the size of the root system);

  3. If several seedlings are planted, the minimum distance between them should be about 200 cm.
  4. A layer of drainage should be placed at the bottom of the hole. Broken bricks or rubble will do.
  5. Fill the planting hole with a soil mixture consisting of peat, sod soil and sand.
  6. Position the seedling in the center of the hole and then gently straighten its roots.

  7. Fill the hole with the soil mixture so that no voids are left.
  8. A hole should be made around the seedling, followed by abundant watering.

In order to prevent excessively rapid evaporation of moisture from the soil, its surface should be mulched. Peat is very suitable for this.

Potato spruce "super blue"

Super Blue Spruce care

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

The Super Blue Spruce is a very low care requirement which together with its high decorative value makes it very attractive to gardeners.

Basic rules of care:

  1. How to water. If such a plant was used to create a "green hedge", then water it regularly - once a week. As long as the plant is young, it responds well to sprinkling the crown, you can use a hose or watering can for this. About 12 liters of water should be poured under one plant.
  2. Fertilizer.

    At the time the seedling is planted in the ground, the bulk of the fertilizer is applied to the soil. Then annually fertilize the plant with universal mineral fertilizer in early spring before the young shoots appear.

  3. Take care of the soil. It is recommended to loosen it regularly. But not to traumatize the root system, the depth of loosening should be maximum 70 mm.

    Also, the soil surface should be covered with a layer of mulch to prevent it from drying out.

  4. Trimming. This is done in the spring and fall, and all injured and withered shoots should be cut out.

How to trim a Blue Spruce properly (small pruning)

Application and importance

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

A very impressive evergreen plant such as the Super Blue Spruce is a great decoration for any garden or yard. It is often used for decoration of parks and city squares.

The plant grows well in urban environments, as it is not afraid of the air polluted with dust and exhaust gases. This tree perfectly combines with different landscape compositions, not infrequently using plants with contrasting colors of leaves. Many families use this particular spruce for New Year's Eve and therefore it is commonly called the "family tree".

Spreading methods

Spruce Super Blue Spruce can be propagated by grafting, seed and cuttings. If someone has a desire to grow a spruce with their own hands, seed propagation is excellent for this purpose.

It is easier to buy a ready-made seedling in a specialized store. Gardeners with experience prefer to propagate such a tree by grafting or cuttings.

Growing from seeds

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

Wishing to grow such a tree from seeds, you should be prepared for the fact that about ½ of them will not germinate. However, 8 out of 10 newly emerged seedlings will have needles with a color other than blue."

After the cones have dried well, you should take the seed out of them.

This should be done several months before sowing. Just before sowing, the seeds should be disinfected by placing them in a solution of an antifungal agent for 12 hours. They are then sown in small pots with the substrate surface covered with a thick (about 20 mm) mulching layer of peat and sawdust.

First shoots should appear after about 1.5 weeks.

Of the seedlings, select those that are blue in color. They should be regularly sprayed with a sprayer, which should be done twice a day.

The seedlings can be planted in the open ground after they are 3 years old. But in order for them to develop properly all this time, they should be systematically taken outdoors.

Cuttings

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

The cuttings are prepared in April or May, and a tree that is five years old is selected for this purpose.

The maximum length of the cuttings is 12 centimetres and they are taken with a piece of bark ("heel").

The greenhouse is ideal for rooting, and perlite or a sandy peat mixture is used as a substrate. A layer of gravel is placed at the bottom of the planting hole, which is covered with leaf humus on top, and then with soil mixture.

Seedlings are planted at a 30 degree angle to a depth of about 20 mm. For normal development, they should be kept in a greenhouse for 12 months.

Then they will be subjected to systematic outdoor hardening. When the bush is 3 years old, it should be planted outdoors.

Grafting

Producing by grafting requires experience and certain knowledge. A conifer seedling is most often used as a rootstock.

Diseases and pests

Spruce Super Blue: description, planting and care, propagation

If any plant is not properly cared for or placed in unsuitable conditions, this can cause it to be affected by diseases or pests.

In this case, the Super Blue Spruce is no exception. To save the plant, you need to identify the problem in a timely manner and take all necessary measures to solve it. And inexperienced gardeners can use the help of specialized companies.

The most common diseases of Super Blue are:

  1. Rust. Swellings and spots of reddish color appear on the branches of the diseased plant.

    The tree can be cured with a solution of Bordeaux mixture: 10 grams of the substance per 1 liter of water. All branches affected by the disease must be cut off.

  2. Schütte. This is a fungal disease. The affected plant develops brown-colored spots after the snow melts.

    Prophylactic treatments are done with Bordeaux mixture in summer or spring.

Pests such as:

  1. Fir chermesis may infest the plant. This is a type of aphid. It settles in the lower part of the plant and looks like white absorbent cotton.
  2. The spider mite.

    It causes the needles to change their color to yellow.

  3. Spruce sawfly. The main symptom is the appearance of spots on young shoots that resemble burns.

To save the plant from diseases or pests, treatments with insecticides or fungicides are recommended.

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