Spring Nursery Find: Columnar Norway Spruce - Cupressina - April 2022

Yesterday, I posted a photo and took a HUGE, deep breath and walked past a second Japanese White Pine tree that I saw at the big box nursery.  Why did I have to take a breath?  Because, I *really* wanted one of those trees.  Why did I walk past it?  Because I bought one last year.  And it seems to have failed this Winter.  But, what else did I see on that VERY SAME visit?    A tree that - like the Japanese White Pine - is also something that I've lusted after for a while.  In fact, I even posted an entire "Tree Dreaming" post about this species on the blog back in 2018.  

What's that tree?  It is a columnar Norway Spruce - Picea abies 'Cupressina'.  Here's that post from 2018.  Here - below - is the tag on one of these that I saw at the big box nursery showing the $99 price tag.

Back in 2018, I said that there was A LOT to like about this tree: columnar, vertical, fast(ish) and unique.  At the time, I also said that it could withstand snow loads, but a quick peek at the Conifer Society listing, they (now) warn about snow loads and splaying.   I found this post showing some splaying in a more mature tree, too.  

So...that has me concerned a bit.  I *thought* that maybe this one could replace the dead White Pine in the close bed.  But, is this fool's gold?  I'm not sure what to think now.  I bought these Gold Cone Juniper shrubs way back in 2018 and they suffered from splaying (and I think I injured them *even more* by wiring them up myself).  I don't want to repeat that again. 

This tree has all the right signs - for me.  But....I didn't bring it home (on this visit).  That doesn't mean that I'm NOT still dreaming about it.


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