Colorado Blue Spruce

Picea pungens

With its Christmas tree shape and gorgeous color, the Colorado blue spruce (Picea pungens ‘Glauca’) adds a touch of seasonal flair to your landscape. With this tree, your landscape can get that classic spruce appearance without any pruning. 

Colorado Blue Spruce Attributes

These spruce trees can be found in most Rocky Mountain states. It is the official tree of Colorado. While it is the perfect fit for the holidays, you can enjoy these spruces throughout the seasons. In your landscape, the color of the Colorado blue spruce stands out. It has a hue that ranges from blue to silver. The stiffed needles point out from the branches, and they measure about 1.5 inches long. Those silvery-blue needles also produce a fresh pine scent. On the mature trees, you will notice dark gray furrows in the bark. Its light brown cones can grow to 4 inches long.

Colorado Blue Spruce




  • Plant Type: Conifer, Tree
  • Watering Needs: Water regularly – weekly, or more often in extreme heat.
  • Botanical Pronunciation: PY-see-a PUN-jenz
  • Deciduous/evergreen: Evergreen
  • Growth habit: Slow
  • Average landscape size: Reaches 10-12 ft. tall in 10 years; 40-60 ft. tall, 10-20 ft. wide with age.
  • Special features: Bird Friendly, Dramatic Foliage Color, Easy Care, North American Native Selection, Tolerates Road Salt, Year-round Interest
  • Foliage color: Dark green
  • Blooms: Conifer
  • Flower color: 
  • Flower attributes: 
  • Garden style: Cottage, Rustic
  • Design Ideas: Use it to separate tall multistory buildings or in shelterbelts and windbreaks. Tall enough to screen the view from second- or third-story windows. Gorgeous in estate-sized forests of broadleaf and conifers
  • Companion Plants: Spirea (Spiraea); Butterfly Bush (Buddleja); Weigela (Weigela); Blanket Flower (Gaillardia); Stonecrop (Sedum)

Colorado Blue Spruce Landscape Uses

The hues of the Colorado blue spruce make other ornamental elements pop throughout your landscape. When placed around those dark green trees, this Colorado blue spruce provides a striking contrast. From the spring to the winter, this beautiful spruce tree is a treat. In the winter, this tree is a showstopper. You can enjoy a traditional winter landscape as the snow gathers on its brown branches. These spruces are perfect as Christmas trees, and they are the ideal choice for your winter decor.

The Colorado blue spruce makes an exceptional accent tree. If you need a windbreak or privacy screen, you cannot go wrong with this variety of blue spruce. For those living near large populations of wildlife, these ornamental trees resist deer with their strong smell and prickly texture. While the Colorado blue spruce repels deer, it is the perfect habitat for those local rabbits and birds.

Colorado Blue Spruce Care

The Colorado blue spruce thrives in full to partial sun. It can tolerate partial shade, but it does better in those spots with plenty of sunshine. These spruces love moist, well-draining soil. Poorly draining soils can result in limited growth or root rot. You may need to add soil amendments for a more fertile growing environment. However, this spruce is not fussy about soil pH levels.

This species of spruce is tolerant of droughts, and it can survive with limited water. You will want to avoid waterlogging the tree. Any watering should be used sparingly, and there should be plenty of time for the tree to soak up all that excess water. Young trees should be watered during those harsh dry spells. You can also add garden mulch around the tree to help retain moisture. Since this tree is a native of Colorado, it is very tolerant of colder weather. In some cases, it can tolerate heat. However, the tree is not suitable for those sweltering and humid climates.

The Colorado blue spruce does not need frequent fertilizer. In the spring, fertilize the tree before the growing season. If you want to increase the needles’ color and length, then some fertilizer could be applied for additional nutrition. Slow-release granular fertilizer is the best choice and should be used near the root zone. To prevent burning from the fertilizer, you want to add two inches of water around the trunk.

These spruce trees do not need to be pruned. However, you can prune to promote a denser foliage. Since these trees are used for Christmas decorating, many people choose to add them as potted landscaping plants. After the holiday, you can add them permanently to your space. Once the season is finished, dig a hole and keep the dirt loose to provide enough air for the roots.

The Colorado Blue Spruce Is a Must-Have

Picea pungens

If you want an impressive tree with beautiful color, then the Colorado blue spruce is an exceptional choice for your landscape. In addition to the Christmas decor, this tree makes an excellent piece throughout the year. The silvery-blue hue provides the perfect background to show off those dark green trees or spectacular fall colors.

At Arbor Valley Nursery, we can help you order the Colorado blue spruce for your inventory. These trees are a great addition to any space. Along with these spruces, we have a large selection of trees, shrubs, and plants. Our team can help you find the right species for your outdoor spaces. For more information about these trees, please take a few minutes to fill out the contact form.

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