Native & Naturalized Plants of the Carolinas & Georgia


1081

Tree
Perennial
Monoecious

Native to North Carolina
Documented growing wild in - NC -

Uncommon

Look for it . It is common to dominant in spruce and spruce-fir forests at high elevations, scattered in , heath balds, boulderfield forests, ridges, and rarely coves, also in bogs or swampy forests at lower elevations (down to about 1000m), ranging in moisture tolerance from dry ridges (though these are often fog-bathed) to saturated peats. Also sometimes planted and naturalized, per Weakley's Flora

map
To see a detailed map, click here

 

LEAVES:
Evergreen
Leaves needle-like, 4-sided, to 5/8" long
Needles not in bundles, arranged on all sides of twig (less dense below)

"FLOWER":
Spring/Summer
Unisexual

FRUIT:
Fall
Cone

 

TO LEARN MORE about this plant, look it up in a good book!



Spermatophytes (seed plants): Gymnosperms (non-flowering plants): Conifers: Pinales

WEAKLEY'S FLORA (11/30/12):
Picea rubens   FAMILY Pinaceae

SYNONYMOUS WITH PLANTS NATIONAL DATABASE:
Picea rubens   FAMILY Pinaceae

SYNONYMOUS WITH VASCULAR FLORA OF THE CAROLINAS (1968) 016-02-001:
Picea rubens   FAMILY Pinaceae

 

COMMON NAME:
Red Spruce, He Balsam


Click or hover over the thumbnails to see larger pictures.

image of Picea rubens

USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913    pnd_piru_001_lvd

        

image of Picea rubens

USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / USDA Wetland flora: Field office illustrated guide    pnd_piru_003_lvd

        

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm160503_263

May    Jackson County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm160503_267

May    Jackson County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

Pollen cones terminal or subterminal, oval, and bright red at maturity, per Native Trees of the Southeast, An Identification Guide.

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm0407t_20

July    Mitchell County    NC

The Roan Highlands

Cones pendant, 1.25-2" long, reddish-brown, per Woody Plants of the Blue Ridge.


click here to see other plants that look similar to this COMPARE cones of Fir, Hemlock and Spruce

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm0507g_26

July    Pocahontas County    WV

Cranberry Glades Botanical Area


click here to see other plants that look similar to this COMPARE conifers (not including Pines)

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm0507g_27

July    Pocahontas County    WV

Cranberry Glades Botanical Area

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm0507n_10

July    Transylvania County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

The living trees are Red Spruce; the dead trees are Fraser Fir.

image of Picea rubens

Richard and Teresa Ware    rtw_p_rubens_6

July        

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm0508b_35

August    Transylvania County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm0508b_36

August    Transylvania County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

Needles bright green without white bands below, much shorter than Abies, per Native Trees of the Southeast, An Identification Guide.


click here to see other plants that look similar to this COMPARE needles of Fir, Hemlock and Spruce

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm0508b_36b

August    Transylvania County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

Leaves 4-sided, per Woody Plants of the Blue Ridge.

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    s050806_kl

August    Transylvania County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

Leaves [needles] attached to peglike bases on twigs, per Woody Plants of the Blue Ridge.

image of Picea rubens

JK Marlow    jkm080924_052

September    Transylvania County    NC

Blue Ridge Parkway

image of Picea rubens

L.L. (Chick) Gaddy    llg_fraserfirredspruce

Month Unknown        

Left: soft balsam-scented needles of Fraser Fir. Right: prickly Red Spruce, per Alpine South: Plants and Plant Communities of the High Elevations of the Southern Appalachians.