Colorado spruce "Semper dwarf" from nursery stock

James W.

Chumono
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Picked up a Picea pungens "Semper dwarf" today. A little pricier than I like for nursery stock but I did talk them down to about 40% of the asking price. No graft that I could tell. Nice base. It looked a bit rough to start with.
seater_1.jpg
After cleaning up it looks better.
sester_2.jpg
I'll repot it next spring. Should be easy because it is in bark and doesn't have much of a rootball.
I am looking forward to developing this one, it seems like a good project.
 

Ugo

Shohin
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Qc, Canada
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Hi!

Nice find!
Im used to Pices Pungen as they grow everywhere around my place.

I guess you are probably aware of this but they are able to back bud on old wood so what what was lost can be gained back.

Now that the work is done I would clean eventual structural flaws for example correcting the left side lower branche and crouches.


I think this tree give you an opportunity here, to figure out why the lower branches are impacted.
From my point of view It looks like it suffered from lack of water, the lowest branches being sacrified for the apex.


From what I see I would be tempted to skip next spring repot..
Maybe its the picture but there is not much fine roots on the side of the root ball.
If necessary you could up pot the tree using a draining substrate , work the surface roots and the sheen but I would not go further.

To give you a bit of hope, I saved one that was in way worst shape than yours so its totally possible to bring it where you want!

Have fun
Ugo
 

James W.

Chumono
Messages
598
Reaction score
622
Location
Augusta, KS
USDA Zone
6b
Hi!

Nice find!
Im used to Pices Pungen as they grow everywhere around my place.

I guess you are probably aware of this but they are able to back bud on old wood so what what was lost can be gained back.

Now that the work is done I would clean eventual structural flaws for example correcting the left side lower branche and crouches.


I think this tree give you an opportunity here, to figure out why the lower branches are impacted.
From my point of view It looks like it suffered from lack of water, the lowest branches being sacrified for the apex.


From what I see I would be tempted to skip next spring repot..
Maybe its the picture but there is not much fine roots on the side of the root ball.
If necessary you could up pot the tree using a draining substrate , work the surface roots and the sheen but I would not go further.

To give you a bit of hope, I saved one that was in way worst shape than yours so its totally possible to bring it where you want!

Have fun
Ugo
It is not really in too bad of health. It looks like it had been at the nursery for 3 or 4 years in almost full shade so it was busy reaching for the light and sluffing off lower limbs. Also, I don't think the nursery had ever fertilized it. It will get 1/2 day of sun the rest of this year then pretty much full sun in the future. More sun and a good dose of fertilizer should do a world of good.
The root ball is loose and not as root bound as I would expect it to be. Part of the reason may be that the tree is literally flopping around in the pot. It feels like to me that if I can get it into better soil and a different pot without a huge disruption to the roots that will make it easier for me to keep the tree alive and healthy. On the other hand, I am reluctant to risk the the tree so I will evaluate it further next spring. I have not dug down any to see what the root flare looks like and I am a bit antsy to be doing that, better to wait I think.
When I cleaned it up I removed only dead material. The trunk measures about three and a half inches at the soil so I could remove branches 5" up without jeopardizing any future styling. Some of the lowest branches have very little foliage and are not contributing much to the health of the tree so I may remove a few of them, but there's no rush.
 
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