Picea engelmannii Parry ex Engelm.
Engelmann's Spruce, Engelmann Spruce
Pinaceae (Pine Family)
USDA Symbol: PIEN
Large tree with dark or blue-green foliage and a dense, narrow, conical crown of short branches spreading in close rows. Engelmann’s spruce is a narrow, spire-like evergreen, usually growing 75-100 ft. tall, sometimes much taller. Its branches descend to sweep the ground and conceal the trunk. The coniferous needles are dark blue-green.
Its resonant qualities make the wood of Engelmann Spruce valuable for piano sounding boards and violins. This species was named after George Engelmann (1809-84), the German-born physician and botanist of St. Louis and authority on conifers.
The species of this plant is named for George Engelmann (1809-1884) who was born in Germany and settled in St. Louis, Missouri, as a young man. He was a physician and botanist, describing especially North American Abies (Firs), Agaves, Cactus (for which he described more than 108 species), Cuscuta (Dodder), Euphorbiaceae (Spurge Family), Juncus (Rushes), Juniperus (“Cedar”), Pinus (Pines), Vitis (Grapes), and Yuccas. When he died much of his collection went to Missouri Botanical Garden.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Retention: Evergreen
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Breeding System: Flowers Unisexual , Monoecious
Fruit Type: Cone
Size Notes: Up to about 200 feet tall.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Apr , May
DistributionUSA: AZ , CA , CO , ID , MT , NM , NV , OR , UT , WA , WY
Canada: AB , BC
Native Distribution: Yukon & B.C. through Rockies to NM, AZ, and northern Mexico & through Pacific states to n. CA
Native Habitat: Mountain forests
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
CaCO3 Tolerance: High
Soil Description: Moist, rich, loamy soils.
Conditions Comments: This tree is widely adaptable but has some insect and disease susceptibility. It is very slow growing.
PropagationDescription: Seeds of most Picea species germinate promptly without pretreatment. Cuttings root in low percentages.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: No treatment is necessary.
Commercially Avail: yes
Find Seed or Plants
View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.
National Wetland Indicator Status
Web ReferenceWebref 3 - Flora of North America (2014) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Picea engelmannii in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Picea engelmannii in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Picea engelmannii
MetadataRecord Modified: 2022-09-21
Research By: TWC Staff