Spruce, Colorado Blue (PICEA PUNGENS) - 'FAT ALBERT'
This evergreen is a Simply Sunshine favorite due to it's tough, stout stature and it's ability to be content with very little care. 'Fat Albert' It is noted for its near perfect conical shape with a strong, straight central leader and full, pyramidal form from the time it is young through maturity. It's dense ascending branches and steel blue needle color adorned with light brown cones make this everything an evergreen should be. It can be used as a windbreak, screen, or accent tree. Because it is typically found in elevations from 6,000 feet to 11,000 feet, it is an excellent high elevation selection. Additionally, it prefers cool climates and will struggle in heat and humidity of southern states making it the perfect choice for northern plantings. Once established, 'Fat Albert' has some drought tolerance, however, the soil should be kept consistently moist in the early years. Requires no staking or training to achieve it's stature and is considered a "perfect and predictable Colorado Blue Spruce". (Iseli Nursery)
Our supplier states that at maturity, 'Fat Albert' should reach 10-15 feet tall and 10-12 feet wide, although other nurseries indicate that under ideal conditions it could reach 25 feet tall and 15 feet wide. USDA Hardiness puts 'Fat Albert' at a zone 2, making this tough little evergreen very cold hardy. Colorado Blue Spruces are listed as a selection in the University of Wyoming "Conservation Trees & Shrubs For Wyoming" guide. It has a moderate to fast growth rate at 15+ inches per year. It requires full sun and moist, well-drained soil. During the early years while it is getting established, it needs consistent moisture. In general, Colorado Blue Spruces can be susceptible to needle cast, canker, and rust. Aphids (particularly spruce gall aphids), scale, budworms, and bagworms can also be an issue. Spider mite invasions can cause significant problems with new growth and overall tree health.