(Pinaceae Picea pungens)
Adopted on February 20, 1933.
The blue spruce, Pinaceae Picea
pungens, was chosen by the Utah
State Legislature in 1933 to be the
Tree. The tree is found in the Wasatch
and Uinta mountains at elevations
between 6,000 to 11,000 feet. It can be
transplanted successfully and is widely
used as an ornamental tree. Its foliage
is generally silvery blue in color and
has the ability to withstand temperature
The four-angled needles of the blue
spruce are from 3/4 to 1 1/8 inches long
and are dull blue green. This large tree
has gray or brown bark that is furrowed
into scaly ridges. Cones are from 2 1/2
to 4 inches long and are light brown
with long, thin, irregularly toothed
It is a slow-growing, long-lived tree
of medium size that, because of its
symmetry and color, is planted
extensively as an ornamental. Because
blue spruce is relatively scarce and the
wood is brittle and often full of knots,
it is not an important timber tree.
- Leaf: Evergreen, stiff,
3/4 to 1 1/4 inch long, yellow-green
to bluish or white. Needles are very
sharp, and have an acidic taste.
Flower: Monoecious; males
yellow-brown to purple, scattered
throughout trees; females purple,
upright, in tops of the trees.
- Fruit: Cones are 2 to 4
inches long, cylindrical, light
brown in color. Cone scales are
pointed with jagged-erose margins.
Maturing in autumn.
- Twig: Stout (when
compared to other spruces),
hairless, orange-brown. Needles are
borne on woody pegs. Bud scales are
- Bark: Gray to red-brown,
young trees with small, thin scales
- older trees developing furrows.
- Form: A medium to large
tree with pyramidal form. Branches
appear layered, especially with age.
Plantae -- Plants
Tracheobionta -- Vascular
Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Coniferophyta – Conifers
Pinaceae – Pine family
Picea A. Dietr. –
Picea pungens Engelm.
– blue spruce
Dendrology at Virginia Tech
U.S. Department of Agriculture