E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Picea glauca (Moench) Voss
white spruce
Pinaceae (Pine family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jim Dickson  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #351)

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Distribution of Picea glauca
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Introduction

This is an evergreen coniferous tree species that is found across Canada and in Alaska, northern Montana and Wyoming.

Species Information

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General:
Tree erect, up to 40 m tall; bark silvery-brown to blackish, scaly, thin; young twigs glabrous.
Leaves:
Needles pointed, stiff; standing out in all directions; 4-angled; aromatic when crushed.
Cones:
Seed cones 2.5-3.5 cm long, becoming yellowish-brown at maturity, scales rounded to blunt at tip, smooth margined, not papery thin; pollen cones pale red.
Notes:
Hybridizes with P. engelmannii and P. sitchensis. Hybrids with P. sitchensis have been called P. x lutzii Little and occur in the Coast Mountains. Hybrids with P. engelmannii occur throughout much of interior BC; pure P. glauca is found mostly N of 56degreeN and in the Chilcotin.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Yellow
Blooming Period:
Late Spring
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Brown
Present over the Summer
Source:  The USDA

Habitat / Range

Wet to dry slopes, river terraces, bogs and fens in the montane and subalpine zones; common in C and N BC, except on coast; N to AK, YT and NT, E to NF and S to N MT and WY.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Ecology

Ecological Framework for Picea glauca

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class

Minimum

Average

Maximum

Elevation (metres) 0 903 2110
Slope Gradient (%) 0 13 205
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
0 289 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
0 4 8
Modal Nutrient Regime
Class
C
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
3446
Modal BEC Zone Class
BWBS
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: BAFA(26), BWBS(1403), CWH(1), ESSF(107), ICH(105), IDF(99), IMA(1), MS(112), PP(7), SBPS(69), SBS(803), SWB(307)

Climate

The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is montane boreal & cool temperate.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Picea canadensis (Mill.) Britton, Sterns & Poggenb.
Picea glauca var. albertiana (S. Br.) Sarg.
Picea glauca var. densata Bailey
Picea glauca var. porsildii Raup

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

Related Databases

General References