Plant of the Month for Firestone Colorado area landscapes-January 2023

Dwarf Conifers

Firestone, Colorado area landscapes {Monthly Series}

Dwarf conifers can play an important role in any landscape, but they become particularly important when designing a landscape, or adding to one for that matter, in the smaller, and more space conscious properties of many newer homes. Lack of options for narrow, or columnar plant material for wrapping a back fence area for privacy, along with just tight spaces in general, lends opportunity to add space saving dwarf conifers into the mix in our Firestone Colorado Landscapes.

Patience is key with dwarf conifers. Buy or install them as large as you can find them, because they can take a long time to fill in, sometimes only adding a few inches of growth per year. Placing several dwarfs of different species, with different shapes, textures, and colors in one general area sometimes with a larger columnar Juniper as a focal backdrop can add greatly to a corner or back fence area. Some can change to yellow in winter and some put out fresh growth in spring as yellow, that then changes to green. The cones are often a focal point too, with varying colors from purple, blue, yellow, lavender, red and orange, and some are bicolor. Foliage can be variegated, and even white on one side of the needle and green on the other side of the needle, giving a distinctive look.

Most conifers will like a rich, loam soil, but can do just fine in our more clay landscapes too. A general purpose fertilizer every couple years will help them stay healthy. Most require some watering to become established, being careful not to overwater when young. They are drought tolerant, and need little additional water above what the initial drip system installed with it will provide since they don’t do well with an abundance of water. So, they are a great choice for the Xeriscape conscious landscaper.

Here are 15 suggestions to try. The key is finding them though your local nursery or landscaper as they are generally not a well-stocked item. When you find that a nursery has gotten a new delivery of an obscure dwarf evergreen, research it, but don’t hesitate, buy one or 3 and get them going. You won’t be disappointed.

  1. Dwarf Scots Pine or Beuvronensis
  2. Dwarf Blue Eastern White Pine
  3. ‘Mops’ Mugo Pine
  4. Dwarf Norway Spruce ‘Pumila’ or ‘Pusch’
  5. Howells Dwarf Tigertail Spruce
  6. ‘Yukon Blue’ White Spruce
  7. ‘Red Cone’ Norway Spruce
  8. Dwarf Globe Blue Spruce
  9. Dwarf Alberta White Spruce (be careful of spider mites with this one).
  10. Compact Oriental Spruce
  11. Dwarf Serbian Spruce
  12. Sester Dwarf Spruce
  13. North Star Dwarf Spruce
  14. Uncle Fogy Dwarf Jack Pine
  15. Dwarf Austrian Pine

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