Simply Trees

Dwarf Alberta Spruce

Ships 1-3 days*


$1500+, SAVEMORE20 for 20% off
$3000+, SAVEMORE30 for 30% off
$7000+, Contact our sales team

For questions on bulk order discounts
Please contact us at

Once a monthFull sunDeer resistant
  • Compact Elegance: Its dense, bright green needles and neat, conical form provide a miniature version of the majestic spruces found in northern forests. This dwarf cultivar, growing only 2-4 inches per year, is ideal for small gardens or as a focal point in a mixed border.
  • Low Maintenance: With a slow growth rate and no need for regular pruning, this hardy spruce is perfect for those who desire a beautiful garden but have limited time for upkeep.
  • Versatility in Landscape Design: Whether used for a formal look, a fairy garden, or as a container plant, the Dwarf Alberta Spruce's versatility in design makes it a top pick for creative gardening projects. Its resilience in cold climates also means it can bring greenery to the garden even in the depths of winter.

More Details

The Dwarf Alberta Spruce, scientifically known as Picea glauca 'Conica', is a popular evergreen conifer with a distinctive conical shape and dense, soft, needle-like foliage. This slow-growing dwarf variety is highly prized for its compact size and fine texture, making it an ideal choice for small gardens, foundation plantings, containers, and as a focal point in landscape designs. Its symmetrical form requires no pruning to maintain its neat appearance, offering year-round greenery and structure to the garden. Perfect for gardeners seeking a low-maintenance and hardy plant that provides consistent beauty throughout the seasons.

Growth rate: Very slow growth rate; mature height of 6-8 feet and width of 2-3 feet over many years.

Please note: Images on our website depict plants and trees at full maturity to showcase their expected grown characteristics. These images are illustrative examples only and do not represent the size of plants or trees upon delivery.

Pruning: Requires little to no pruning due to its naturally compact growth habit.

Fertilization: Apply a balanced, slow-release fertilizer in early spring to support healthy growth.

Winter Protection: Exceptionally cold-hardy and does not require special winter protection in its growing zones.

Choose a location with well-draining soil in full sun to light shade. Dig a hole as deep and twice as wide as the root ball. Plant the spruce, backfill with soil, and water thoroughly. Space plants according to their mature width to allow for full growth.

Dwarf Alberta Spruce benefits from regular watering during its establishment phase and thrives in full sun. Water regularly during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system; reduce frequency once established, as it is relatively drought-tolerant. Prefers full sun for optimal growth and form but can tolerate partial shade. Proper care and sunlight exposure ensure vigorous growth and maintain its classic conical shape.

We process and ship your order as quickly as possible, typically within 1-3 business days. You will receive a shipping confirmation with tracking information once your item(s) ship.

We have perfected packaging and shipping plants & trees! That is why we DO NOT use any third-party fulfillment like most other online retailers. Your trees go straight from our farm to your door, safely packaged by our team of seasoned professionals. Our process ensures your plants leave our facility and arrive to your door in the best condition possible!

In cases of extreme cold or hot weather, we may temporarily delay shipping to ensure the well-being of your plants. Our primary focus is on delivering healthy and thriving plants to you. Rest assured, we'll make every effort to notify you of any delays promptly.

Please allow additional ship times during inclement weather and sale periods. We do not process or ship orders on the weekend or U.S. Holidays. Simply Trees is not responsible for delays due to carriers, local disruptions, or weather.

See how we pack your plants!

Learn more about our Shipping Policy

At Simply Trees, we're committed to your satisfaction. If your plants arrive considerably damaged or sustained damage beyond the point of recovery, please contact us within five days at with clear photos for assistance. Our 30-day guarantee covers issues after planting, subject to our terms and conditions. We can't cover plants in the wrong climate or with inadequate care, but we're here to help in other situations. For a detailed understanding of our 30-day guarantee and how we ensure a fair process, click here to learn more.


Zones 2-8

The Dwarf Alberta Spruce is suited for USDA Zones 2-8, demonstrating exceptional cold hardiness. It prefers full sun to achieve optimal growth and health but can tolerate light shade. This spruce variety adapts well to a range of soil types, provided they are well-drained.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Dwarf Alberta Spruce is prized for its compact size and dense, conical form, making it a popular choice for smaller landscapes and garden settings. Typically, this cultivar reaches a mature height of around 6 to 8 feet and a width of 3 to 4 feet over several decades. However, it's important to note that growth rates can vary depending on factors such as environmental conditions, soil quality, and care practices. With its slow growth rate, the Dwarf Alberta Spruce maintains its size relatively well, making it suitable for use as a focal point, specimen plant, or accent in garden beds, borders, or container gardens. Regular pruning and maintenance can help preserve its compact shape and overall health.

The Dwarf Alberta Spruce is known for its slow growth rate, making it an excellent choice for small gardens, rockeries, or container planting where space is limited. On average, it typically grows around 2 to 4 inches per year under optimal growing conditions. However, growth rates can vary depending on factors such as soil quality, sunlight exposure, and water availability. While slow-growing, Dwarf Alberta Spruce can eventually reach a mature height of around 6 to 8 feet over several decades, maintaining its compact, conical shape. Regular care and proper maintenance can help promote healthy growth and preserve the tree's distinctive form for years to come.

The best place to plant Dwarf Alberta Spruce is in a location that provides the ideal growing conditions for this compact evergreen tree. Here are some key considerations:

Sunlight: Dwarf Alberta Spruce thrives in full sun to partial shade. Choose a planting site that receives at least 6 hours of sunlight per day for optimal growth and foliage density.

Soil: Ensure the soil is well-draining and rich in organic matter. Dwarf Alberta Spruce prefers slightly acidic to neutral soil pH. Avoid planting in heavy clay or waterlogged soils, as they can lead to root rot.

Spacing: When planting multiple Dwarf Alberta Spruces, space them at least 3 to 6 feet apart to allow for proper air circulation and prevent overcrowding as they mature. Single specimens can be planted as focal points or accents in the landscape.

Protection: Plant Dwarf Alberta Spruce in a location sheltered from strong winds to prevent damage to its delicate foliage. Avoid areas prone to salt spray, as this can cause browning or discoloration of the needles.

Landscape Design: Consider the overall landscape design and choose a planting site that complements the tree's compact, pyramidal form. Dwarf Alberta Spruce works well as a specimen plant, in foundation plantings, or as part of a rock garden or Japanese garden.

Container Culture: Dwarf Alberta Spruce can also be grown successfully in containers or planters, making them versatile options for patios, decks, and small outdoor spaces. Ensure containers have adequate drainage holes and use a well-draining potting mix.

By selecting a suitable planting site with the right environmental conditions, you can help your Dwarf Alberta Spruce thrive and contribute to the beauty of your landscape for years to come.

Yes, you can keep a Dwarf Alberta Spruce small through regular pruning and maintenance. Here are some tips for maintaining the compact size of your Dwarf Alberta Spruce:

Pruning: Regular pruning is essential to control the size and shape of the tree. Use sharp, clean pruning shears to selectively remove branches, focusing on areas where growth is excessive or where you want to maintain a compact form.

Annual Maintenance: Plan to prune your Dwarf Alberta Spruce annually during the dormant season, typically in late winter or early spring before new growth emerges. This timing allows the tree to recover and heal from pruning wounds before entering the active growing season.

Selective Pruning: When pruning, focus on removing upward-growing or outward-extending branches to encourage a denser, more compact growth habit. Aim to maintain a balanced and symmetrical shape while preserving the natural beauty of the tree.

Size Limitations: Keep in mind that while pruning can control the size of the tree to some extent, Dwarf Alberta Spruce will continue to grow slowly over time. It's essential to select a planting location that allows for the tree's mature size without overcrowding other plants or structures.

Container Culture: Growing Dwarf Alberta Spruce in a container or planter is another option for controlling its size. Container-grown trees can be pruned more frequently to maintain the desired size and shape, and they can be moved to different locations as needed.

Regular Maintenance: In addition to pruning, provide your Dwarf Alberta Spruce with regular care, including adequate watering, fertilization, and protection from pests and diseases. Healthy, well-maintained trees are better equipped to maintain their compact size and overall vitality.

By following these guidelines and regularly attending to your Dwarf Alberta Spruce's pruning and maintenance needs, you can effectively keep the tree small and manageable while enjoying its beauty in your landscape or garden.

Dwarf Alberta Spruce is a hardy evergreen tree that can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, particularly those typical of its native habitat in northern North America. However, its specific cold hardiness can vary depending on factors such as the plant's age, health, and environmental conditions. Here's a general overview of the temperature tolerance of Dwarf Alberta Spruce:

Cold Tolerance: Dwarf Alberta Spruce is well-known for its ability to withstand cold temperatures, making it suitable for growing in USDA hardiness zones 2 through 8. This means it can tolerate winter lows ranging from -50°F (-45°C) in zone 2 to 10°F (-12°C) in zone 8.

Winter Protection: While Dwarf Alberta Spruce is generally cold-hardy, young or newly planted trees may benefit from some winter protection, especially in regions with extreme cold or temperature fluctuations. Mulching around the base of the tree can help insulate the roots and prevent frost heaving.

Heat Tolerance: While Dwarf Alberta Spruce is primarily known for its cold tolerance, it can also withstand moderate summer heat, particularly when provided with adequate moisture and some protection from intense afternoon sun. In hotter climates, situate the tree where it can receive morning sun and afternoon shade to prevent heat stress.

Microclimates: It's important to consider microclimates within your landscape when planting Dwarf Alberta Spruce. Areas near buildings, walls, or other structures may provide additional warmth and shelter from harsh winds, creating more favorable conditions for the tree during cold snaps.

Overall, Dwarf Alberta Spruce is a resilient and adaptable tree that can thrive in a variety of temperature conditions, but it performs best in cool to moderate climates with well-drained soil and adequate moisture. Proper siting, planting, and care practices will help ensure the health and longevity of your Dwarf Alberta Spruce in its chosen location.

When planting Dwarf Alberta Spruce, spacing will depend on the desired outcome and the ultimate size of the plants. These evergreens are slow-growing and maintain a compact, conical form, making them ideal for creating hedges, borders, or accent plantings. Here are some general guidelines for spacing:

Hedges or Borders: If you're planting Dwarf Alberta Spruce as a hedge or border, space the plants approximately 2 to 3 feet apart. This spacing allows for adequate air circulation and room for the plants to fill in without becoming overcrowded.

Accent Plantings: For individual specimens or focal points in the landscape, space Dwarf Alberta Spruce plants at least 3 to 5 feet apart. This wider spacing gives each plant room to develop its characteristic conical shape and allows for visual separation between specimens.

Consider Mature Size: Keep in mind the mature size of Dwarf Alberta Spruce when determining spacing. While they are slow-growing, these trees can eventually reach heights of 6 to 10 feet with a spread of 3 to 5 feet. Providing adequate space at planting ensures that the trees have room to grow without becoming crowded or competing for resources.

Landscape Design: Spacing can also be adjusted based on the specific design goals and aesthetic preferences of your landscape. Closer spacing may create a denser, more formal appearance, while wider spacing allows for a more open and naturalistic look.

When planting Dwarf Alberta Spruce, be sure to consider factors such as soil quality, sunlight exposure, and drainage to ensure optimal growth and health. Proper spacing and planting practices will contribute to the long-term success and beauty of your landscape design.

Yes, you can cut the top off your Dwarf Alberta Spruce, a practice commonly known as "topping." However, it's important to consider the potential consequences before doing so. Topping can have both aesthetic and health implications for the tree.

Aesthetic Considerations: Topping may alter the natural form and symmetry of the tree, resulting in a less desirable appearance. It can also lead to an unnatural or stunted growth pattern.

Health Implications: Topping can cause stress to the tree and may lead to issues such as dieback, disease susceptibility, and weakened structural integrity. The tree may respond with vigorous but poorly attached new growth, making it more susceptible to breakage in storms.

If you're considering topping your Dwarf Alberta Spruce for size control or to reshape it, here are some alternatives to consider:

Pruning for Size: Instead of topping, selectively prune branches back to lateral buds or branch junctions to reduce the overall size of the tree while maintaining its natural form.

Renovation Pruning: If your Dwarf Alberta Spruce has become overgrown or misshapen, consider a more gradual approach to renovation pruning. This involves removing a portion of the oldest or largest branches over several years to rejuvenate the plant.

Replacement: If the tree has outgrown its space or is no longer suitable for its location, you may ultimately decide to remove it and replace it with a more appropriately sized or shaped plant.

Before making any decisions, it's advisable to consult with a Simply Trees horticultural expert who can assess the tree's condition and provide personalized recommendations for pruning or maintenance.

Yes, you can shape a Dwarf Alberta Spruce through pruning. This compact evergreen shrub responds well to pruning and can be shaped into various forms, including cones, globes, or spirals, depending on your preference and landscape design. Here are some tips for shaping:

Timing: Prune Dwarf Alberta Spruce in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. This timing allows the plant to recover quickly and encourages healthy regrowth during the growing season.

Tools: Use sharp, clean pruning shears or scissors to make precise cuts. Disinfecting your tools before and after use helps prevent the spread of diseases.

Technique: When shaping, trim the outermost growth to maintain the desired size and form. To encourage denser growth and maintain a neat appearance, prune back any wayward or leggy branches to a lateral bud or branch junction.

Balance: Step back periodically to assess the symmetry and balance of the shrub as you shape it. Aim for a uniform shape and even distribution of foliage for a visually pleasing result.

Moderation: Avoid removing more than one-third of the plant's foliage at once to prevent stress and encourage healthy growth. Frequent, light pruning sessions throughout the growing season may be preferable to heavy pruning all at once.

Remember that Dwarf Alberta Spruce has a slow growth rate, so it may take some time to achieve the desired shape. With patience and regular maintenance, you can shape your Dwarf Alberta Spruce into a beautiful focal point or accent in your landscape.

Several factors can contribute to a Dwarf Alberta Spruce turning brown:

Watering Issues: Both under-watering and over-watering can cause browning. Under-watering leads to drought stress, while over-watering can suffocate the roots, leading to root rot.

Soil Conditions: Poorly-drained or compacted soil can restrict root growth and lead to waterlogged conditions, causing root rot and subsequent browning of the foliage.

Environmental Stress: Extreme temperatures, especially hot and dry conditions, can stress the plant and cause browning. Similarly, exposure to harsh winds can desiccate the foliage.

Pests and Diseases: Insect infestations, such as spider mites or spruce spider mites, as well as diseases like needle cast or cytospora canker, can cause browning of needles.

Nutrient Deficiency: A lack of essential nutrients, particularly nitrogen, can result in browning of the foliage.

To address the issue, consider the following steps:

- Check the soil moisture regularly and adjust watering as needed to maintain even moisture levels.
- Ensure proper soil drainage and consider amending heavy or compacted soil.
- Provide protection from extreme environmental conditions, such as shading during hot afternoons or windbreaks.
- Monitor for signs of pests and diseases, and treat accordingly with appropriate control measures.
- Consider fertilizing with a balanced fertilizer formulated for evergreen trees to address any nutrient deficiencies.
- Prune out any dead or diseased branches to improve air circulation and promote overall plant health.

If the browning persists or worsens despite your efforts, consulting with a Simply Trees horticulturist or local arborist may be beneficial to diagnose the specific issue and recommend appropriate remedies.

Once Dwarf Alberta Spruce is established, typically after the first growing season, it generally requires watering during dry periods or drought conditions. While it's more drought-tolerant than some other plants, consistent moisture is still essential, especially during hot or windy weather. As a general guideline, aim to water deeply and infrequently, providing enough moisture to reach the root zone but allowing the soil to dry out slightly between watering sessions. Additionally, be mindful of environmental factors such as temperature, humidity, and soil drainage, as they can affect the plant's water requirements.

Our Process

We have perfected packaging and shipping plants & trees! That is why we DO NOT use any third-party fulfillment like most other online retailers. Your trees go straight from our farm to your door, safely packaged by our team of seasoned professionals. Our process ensures your plants leave our facility and arrive to your door in the best condition possible!