How to Plant Colorado Blue Spruce


Colorado blue spruce trees are 50 to 75 feet high when fully mature, and 25 inches wide. Blue spruce are evergreen trees, and are often used on the edges of a property to block wind, provide screening and as a home for birds to nest in. Planting a blue spruce will require two to four strong people to help load and unload the heavy tree.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Shovel
  • 2 2-inch thick planks (optional)
  • Wheelbarrow or heavy duty cart (optional)
  • Utility knife
  • Wire cutters
  • 2 2-inch, pressure-treated lodge-pole stakes
  • Tree tape
  • Peat moss
  • Soil building compost
  • Hose
  • Choose a site in the yard with full sun to partial shade. Soil should be rich, well-drained and moist with a pH of 3.7 to 6.5. Blue spruce can grow in acidic, sandy and clay type soils.

  • Measure the widest part of the spruce tree's rootball. Dig a hole measuring between 20 and 24 inches larger than the widest part of the rootball. The depth of the hole should put the top slope of the rootball approximately 1 to 2 inches above the surrounding ground.

  • Unload the tree from the back of your truck. Using planks, gently roll the spruce tree from the truck bed to the ground. Use a wheelbarrow or cart to transport the tree to the prepared hole. Another option is to back the truck up to the hole and use the planks to remove from the truck and lower into the prepared hole.

  • Cut and unwind all twine that is wrapped around the bottom of the tree trunk and the top of the spruce tree's rootball. Using the wire cutters, snip the wire vertical and horizontal wires and remove the top portion of the wire cage.

  • Cut away the burlap (if any) or take the pins out of the top of the burlap wrapping and roll it down away from the rootball. The burlap sack will decompose into the soil.

  • Set one of the lodge-pole stakes next to, but not touching, the rootball of the spruce tree. Wrap the tree tape around the stake and spruce tree in a figure-eight pattern near the bottom-middle of the tree. Use two stakes if the area is windy.

  • Fill in the hole with a mixture of 2/3 soil and 1/3 peat moss, distributing it even around the spruce tree's rootball and the stake.

  • Spread a 2-to-3 inch layer of soil building compost, starting about 1 or 2 inches away from the trunk and spreading it out to the outer edge of the spruce's branches. Water the newly-planted area thoroughly with a slow, but steady, stream of water.

Tips & Warnings

  • Colorado blue spruce saplings are heavy; take care not to damage the rootball by dropping it on the ground.

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