Picea abies

(Linnaeus) H. Karsten

Deut. Fl. 2/3: 324. 1881.

Common names: Norway spruce épinette de Norvège
Basionym: Pinus abies Linnaeus Sp. Pl. 2: 1002. 1753
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 2. Treatment on page 370.

Trees to 30m; trunk to 2m diam.; crown conic. Bark gray-brown, scaly. Branches short and stout, the upper ascending, the lower drooping; twigs stout, reddish brown, usually glabrous. Buds reddish brown, 5–7mm, apex acute. Leaves 1–2.5cm, 4-angled in cross section, rigid, light to dark green, bearing stomates on all surfaces, apex blunt-tipped. Seed cones (10–)12–16cm; scales diamond-shaped, widest near middle, 18–30 × 15–20mm, thin and flexuous, margin at apex erose to toothed, apex extending 6–10mm beyond seed-wing impression. 2n =24.

Habitat: Woods and persisting after cultivation.


Introduced; Minn., probably elsewhere, Europe.


Norway spruce, native to Europe, has become locally naturalized, at least in north central United States (and adjacent Canada). The species is the most widely cultivated spruce in North America; many cultivars exist, including dwarf shrubs.

Selected References


Lower Taxa