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Brewer’s spruce


Picea breweriana:mini tree pots (8″x4″)

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Picea breweriana, known as Brewer spruce, Brewer’s weeping spruce, or weeping spruce, is a species of spruce native to western North America, where it is one of the rarest on the continent, endemic to the Klamath Mountains of southwest Oregon and northwest California. The specific epithet breweriana is in honor of the American botanist William Henry Brewer.

It grows at moderately high altitudes, from 1000-2700 m. It is a large evergreen coniferous tree growing to 20-40 m tall, exceptionally 54 m, and with a trunk diameter of up to 1.5 m. The bark is thin and scaly, and purple gray in color. The crown is very distinct, distinguished by level branches with vertically pendulous branchlets, each branch forming a ‘curtain’ of foliage. The pendulous foliage only develops when the tree grows to about 1.5-2 m tall; young trees smaller than this (up to about 10-20 years old) are open crowned with sparse, level branchlets. The shoots are orange brown, with dense short pubescence about 0.2mm long and very rough with pulvini 1-2mm long.

Picea breweriana grows very slowly, typically less than 20cm (8in) per year. It occurs mainly on ridgetop sites with very heavy winter snow to provide a steady source of meltwater through the spring, but dry in the summer. The harsh ridgetop conditions minimize competition from other much faster growing trees like Douglas fir. It is very well adapted to cope with heavy snow and ice loads, with tough branches, and the drooping branchlets shedding snow readily (Wikipedia) Photo credit: J. Malone Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons., CC BY SA 3.0