Picea rubens (Red Spruce) Seeds
Zones: 4 to 7.
Native to eastern North America.
The range of the Red spruce includes eastern Canada, New England and the Appalachian mountains. It is a medium sized conifer, that can be planted as a specimen, in group plantings and shelterbelts. The Red spruce has a conical, pagoda-like form. It has four-sided, short, yellowish green needles. The cones are cylindrical, 1 1⁄4–2 inches (3–5 cm) long, reddish-brown and hang down from the branches. It does well in the sun and is more shade tolerant than other spruces. It likes moist, well drained soil, but can tolerate a variety of soils. The Red spruce provides food and cover for small animals and birds. It is the most long lived of the spruces.
Size: Height 60 to 80 ft; Width 15 to 30 ft.
Stratification: Red spruce seeds do not require stratification, but a few weeks can improve germination. Provide about 30 days cold, moist stratification at 3° C (37° F) to 5° C (41° F).
- Soak seeds in water for 24 hours.
- Place seeds in sandwich bag(s), optionally with a bit of damp sand or vermiculite to keep moist.
- Place the bag(s) with seeds in refrigerator for about 30 days.
- After the required time take the seeds out of the refrigerator and sow the seeds in pots 1/8 inch deep and cover lightly. Water gently so as not to wash away the seeds. Keep soil moist but not wet.