White Spruce Cat Spruce Skunk Spruce Labrador Spruce

=Habitat and Range.=--Low, damp, but not wet woods; dry, sandy soils,

high rocky slopes and exposed hilltops, often in scanty soil.

Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, through the provinces of Quebec and

Ontario to Manitoba and British Columbia, northward beyond all

other trees, within 20 miles of the Arctic sea.

Maine,--frequent in sandy soils, often more common than P. rubra, as

r south as the shores of Casco bay; New Hampshire,--abundant around

the shores of the Connecticut river, disappearing southward at

Fifteen-Mile falls; Vermont,--restricted mainly to the northern

sections, more common in the northeast; Massachusetts,--occasional in

the mountainous regions of Berkshire county; a few trees in Hancock (A.

K. Harrington); as far south as Amherst (J. E. Humphrey) and Northampton

(Mrs. Emily H. Terry), probably about the southern limit of the species;

Rhode Island and Connecticut,--not reported.

West through the northern sections of the northern tier of states

to the Rocky mountains.

=Habit.=--A handsome tree, 40-75 feet high, with a diameter of 1-2 feet

at the ground, the trunk tapering slowly, throwing out numerous

scattered or irregularly whorled, gently ascending or nearly horizontal

branches, forming a symmetrical, rather broad conical head, with

numerous branchlets and bluish-green glaucous foliage spread in dense

planes; gum bitter.

=Bark.=--Bark of trunk pale reddish-brown or light gray, on very old

trees ash-white; not as flaky as the bark of the red spruce, the scales

smaller and more closely appressed; young trees and small branches much

smoother, pale reddish-brown or mottled brown and gray, resembling the

fir balsam; branchlets glabrous; shoots from which the leaves have

fallen marked by the scaly, persistent leaf-cushions; new shoots pale

fawn-color at first, turning darker the second season; bark of the tree

throughout decidedly lighter than that of the red or black spruces.

=Winter Buds and Leaves.=--Buds scaly, ovoid or conical, about 1/4 inch

long, light brown. Leaves scattered, stout as those of P. rubra or

very slender, those on the lower side straight or twisted so as to

appear on the upper side, giving a brush-like appearance to the twig,

about 3/4 of an inch long; bluish-green, glaucous on the new shoots,

needle-shaped, 4-angled, slightly curved, bluntish or sharp-pointed,

often mucronate, marked on each side with several parallel rows of dots,

malodorous, especially when bruised.

=Inflorescence.=--April to May. Sterile flowers terminal or axillary, on

wood of the preceding season; distinctly stalked; cylindrical, 1/2 an

inch long; anthers pale red: fertile flowers at or near ends of season's

shoots; scales pale red or green, spirally imbricated, broader than

long; margin roundish, entire or nearly so; each scale bearing two


=Fruit.=--Cones short-stalked, at or near ends of branchlets, light

green while growing, pale brownish when mature, spreading, 1-2-1/2

inches long, when closed cylindrical, tapering towards the apex,

cylindrical or ovate-cylindrical when open, mostly falling the first

winter; scales broad, thin, smooth; margin rounded, sometimes

straight-topped, usually entire.

=Horticultural Value.=--A beautiful tree, requiring cold winters for its

finest development, the best of our New England spruces for ornamental

and forest plantations in the northern sections; grows rapidly in moist

or well-drained soils, in open sun or shade, and in exposed situations.

The foliage is sometimes infested by the red spider. Propagated from


1. Branch with sterile flowers.

2. Stamen, front view.

3. Stamen, side view.

4. Branch with fertile flowers.

5. Cover-scale and ovuliferous scale, outer side.

6. Ovuliferous scale with ovules, inner side.

7. Fruiting branch.

8. Open cone.

9. Seed with ovuliferous scale.

10. Leaves.

11. Cross-sections of leaves.

=Tsuga Canadensis, Carr.=