Picea abies. NORWAY SPRUCE. Europe, Siberia
The spruce has single needles, as does a fir, but they
are diamond-shaped in cross-section and no top or bottom can be distinguished.
New needles are bluer than the green ones of the previous year. The needles are
carried on 'pegs', which remain on the twig after the needles fall. These little
pegs are squarish and have flat tops. The popular Norway spruce has needles about
an inch long with almost blunt tips, and has cones about 6 inches long that hang
very attractively at the ends of branches. Fir cones, of course, stand upright
on the branch. Norway spruce is an important plantation tree in Britain, Germany,
and other parts of Europe, and in the United States is a very widely planted ornamental.
A fine spruce grows on the south side of the Old Union and another at 694 Alvarado
Row. One is on the east side of Lasuen Street north of Museum Way, next to a coast
live oak. Other specimens to be expected on campus are Engelmann spruce (P.
engelmannii) and Sitka spruce (P. sitchensis). Tens of millions
of Sitka spruce have been killed by beetles as a result of a 7° f. temperature
rise in Alaska since the 1970s. Fortunately, this warming has not been global
PINACEAE (Pine family)
Illustrations (links open new windows): habit |Additions/Revisions:
Name derivation, genus | species Latin name for pitch-pine, derived from pix (pitch) | Latin name for fir (abies)Related material: Canopy Trees for Palo Alto Tree Library