• Picea spp.
  • Lifeform: Tree
  • Fire Resistance: Poor
  • Native: No


A spruce is a tree of the genus Picea, a genus of about 35 species of coniferous evergreen trees in the family Pinaceae, found in the northern temperate and boreal (taiga) regions of the earth. Spruces are large trees, from about 20-60 m (about 60-200 ft) tall when mature, and can be distinguished by their whorled branches and conical form. The needles, or leaves, of spruce trees are attached singly to the branches in a spiral fashion, each needle on a small, peg-like structure. The needles are shed when 4-10 years old, leaving the branches rough with the retained pegs (an easy means of distinguishing them from other similar genera, where the branches are fairly smooth).

Care & Maintenance:

Spruce trees are not recommended due to their fire prone nature.  Consider removing spruce trees within 100' of structures or 15' of roadways.  If a tree must be maintained in the defensible space zone (within 100' of structures), extreme care should be taken to reduce the associated wildfire hazard.  

Remove all limbs within 10' of the ground, or 1/3 the height of the tree if less than 30' tall

Remove all dead wood and twiggy growth regularly

Provide canopy separation so that no limbs touch nearby trees or plants

Remove all "ladder fuels," shrubs, and immature trees growing below

Remove fallen needles and detritus regularly

Remove any needles or limbs which fall on the roofs of nearby buildings, and repeat regularly during fire-season

Learn more about Spruces

Close-up Image

Spruces Picea spp.

FIRESafe MARIN   |   P.O. Box 2831  |   San Anselmo, CA 94979   |

Donate to FIRESafe MARIN

© 2014-2020 FIRESafe MARIN. Web Design By XMR Fire