Content Detail

The Sitka spruce is one of North America’s largest conifers, able to reach mature heights of 200 feet or more. This species is found primarily along the western coast of North America and requires the high moisture and high humidity found in that environment. While this is a majestic tree, it is not recommended for midwestern landscapes.

  • Family (English) Pine
  • Family (botanic) Pinus
  • Tree or plant type Tree
  • Native locale North America
  • Size range Large tree (more than 40 feet)
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 7, Zone 8
  • Soil preference Acid soil, Moist, well-drained soil, Wet soil
  • Tolerances Road salt, Wet sites
  • Season of interest early winter, midwinter, late winter, early spring, mid spring, late spring, early summer, midsummer, late summer, early fall, mid fall, late fall
  • Flower color and fragrance Inconspicuous
  • Shape or form Narrow, Pyramidal
  • Growth rate Fast, Moderate

Size and Form: 

This tree commonly grows more than 100 feet high and there are specimens in the wild that exceed 200 feet. The overall form is conical but very narrow.

Native geographic location and habitat: 

Native to the western coast of North America. Found primarily in moisture-rich, maritime environments.

Bark color and texture:

The bark is scaly in appearance, relatively thin, and gray to brown in color.

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture: 

Sharp, four-sided needles are held singly on the stem in a spiral pattern. Needles are light green on top and white on the underside.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size:

Separate male and female flowers are found on the same tree (monoecious). Both are inconspicuous.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions: 

Cones are 1 to 3 inches long and found hanging near the top of the tree.

Plant care:

The tree requires high soil moisture and high humidity. It will not grow well in the Midwest.

List of pests, diseases, and tolerances: 

White pine weevil and spruce beetles are possible insect problems.


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