World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Weeping Spruce

Article Id: WHEBN0003259730
Reproduction Date:

Title: Weeping Spruce  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Siskiyou Mountains
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Weeping Spruce

Brewer spruce, Ridge above Bear Lake, Siskiyou Mountains, Ca.
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Pinophyta
Class: Pinopsida
Order: Pinales
Family: Pinaceae
Genus: Picea
Species: P. breweriana
Binomial name
Picea breweriana

Picea breweriana (Brewer's weeping spruce or just 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.[1][2]

DNA analyses[3][4] have shown that Picea breweriana has a basal position in the Picea clade,[3] suggesting that Picea originated in North America.

It grows at moderately high altitudes, from 1000–2700 m.[5][6][7][8][9]

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 0.2 mm long and very rough with pulvini 1–2 mm long.

The leaves are borne singly on the pulvini, and are needle-like, 15–35 mm long, flattened in cross-section, glossy dark green above, and with two bands of white stomata below.[5][6] The cones are longer than most other North American spruces, pendulous, cylindrical, 8–15 cm long and 2 cm broad when closed, opening to 3–4 cm broad. They have smoothly rounded, thin, flexible scales 2 cm long. The immature cones are dark purple, maturing red-brown 5–7 months after pollination. The seeds are black, 3–4 mm long, with a slender, 12–18 mm long pale brown wing.[5][6]

P. breweriana grows very slowly, typically less than 20 cm (8 in) 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.[5][6][10]

Outside its native range, P. breweriana is a highly valued ornamental tree in gardens, particularly in Great Britain and Scandinavia, where it is appreciated for its dramatically pendulous foliage.[6] This plant has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.[11]


External links

  • on Conifer Country

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.