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Alternatives for Colorado Blue Spruce

The blue green foliage and classic pyramidal shape have made Colorado blue spruce a favorite of gardeners. But its large mature size and cultural requirements have resulted in plants that have outgrown their location or succumb to diseases.

Consider a concolor fir (Abies concolor), like Blue Cloak, if you like the look of blue spruce, but want to avoid its disease problems.

Select a pine when looking for an evergreen more tolerant of adverse soil, weather exposure and urban conditions than spruce and firs.

Add texture and color with (Pinus strobus ‘Tiny Kurls’) Tiny Kurls Eastern white pine. Its dwarf mounded habit and twisted blue green needles add to its appeal.

Use junipers for those hot dry locations.  Medora (Juniperus scopulorum ‘Medora’) requires no pruning to maintain its narrow habit and Star Power’s (Juniperus chinensis ‘Star Power™’) dense prickly nature makes a good deer-resistant screen.

A bit more information:  Concolor firs are hardy in zones 3 to 7 and native from Colorado to southern California, Northern Mexico and New Mexico. It tolerates heat, cold and drought equally well, but prefers rich moist well-drained soils.

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