White Spruce Information: Learn About White Spruce Tree Uses And Care

White Spruce Tree
white spruce
(Image credit: helga_sm)

The white spruce (Picea glauca) is one of the most widely growing coniferous trees in North America, with a range all across the eastern United States and Canada, all the way to South Dakota where it is the state tree. It is one of the most popular Christmas tree choices too. It’s very hardy and easy to grow. Keep reading to learn more white spruce information, including tips on growing white spruce trees and white spruce tree uses.

White Spruce Information

The most common white spruce tree use is Christmas tree farming. Due to their short, stiff needles and evenly spaced branches, they are perfect for ornament hanging. Beyond that, white spruce trees in landscapes are great as natural windbreaks, or in stands of mixed trees. If not cut down for Christmas, the trees will naturally reach a height of 40 to 60 feet (12-18 m.) with a spread of 10 to 20 feet (3-6 m.). The trees are very attractive, keeping their needles all year long and naturally forming a pyramidal shape all the way down to the ground. They are an important shelter and food source for native North American wildlife.

Growing White Spruce Trees

Growing white spruce trees in the landscape is very easy and forgiving, as long as your climate is right. The trees are hardy in USDA zones 2 through 6 and are very tough against cold winter weather and wind. They prefer full sun and do best with at least six hours of direct sunlight per day, but they are also very tolerant of shade. They like soil that is slightly acidic and moist but well-draining. These trees grow best in loam but will do well in sand and even well-drained clay. They can be started both from seeds and cuttings, and saplings transplant very easily.

Liz Baessler
Senior Editor

The only child of a horticulturist and an English teacher, Liz Baessler was destined to become a gardening editor. She has been with Gardening Know how since 2015, and a Senior Editor since 2020. She holds a BA in English from Brandeis University and an MA in English from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. After years of gardening in containers and community garden plots, she finally has a backyard of her own, which she is systematically filling with vegetables and flowers.