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Woody > Picea > Picea orientalis > Picea orientalis 'Aureospicata'

Picea orientalis


Golden Spiked Oriental Spruce

            Mike's Opinion

this is Mike


This it is one of my favourite species. This cultivar has many positive attributes and only a few downfalls. This low maintenance, well kept, handsome tree shows its true beauty when the new growth appears in the spring as small bright yellow shoots that make the dwarf evergreen a magnificent specimen. The contrast between the old, deep green needles, and new yellow growth is brilliant. The neatness of Picea orientalis 'Aureospicata' is said to be one if its great qualities. A somewhat exotic name. The species comes from the Caucasus mountainous regions of Asia. This elegant tree grows slowly into a narrowly pyramidal form with a full skirt of lower branches that arch gracefully outward and towards the ground. In 2006 'Aureospicata' was selected the 'Great Plant Picks' by The Northwest based Plant Awards Program. Once placed in its ideal conditions of moist well-drained soils, it is one of the best spruces in cultivation.

Michael Pascoe, NDP., ODH., CLT., MSc. (Plant Conservation)


Tree (evergreen)
USDA Hardiness Zone
4 - 7
Canadian Hardiness Zone
5b - 7b
RHS Hardiness Zone
Temperature (°C)
Temperature (°F)
20 m
4 - 6 m
Description and Growing Information
Flowering Period
General Description
A narrowly pyramidal form with a full skirt of lower branches that arch gracefully out and down. This wonderful display of new Foliage remains effective until mid-summer, when the spring growth matures to a deep forest green. A slow growing conifer.
Give it plenty of space to fully develop into a beautiful tree. This spruce is perfect for use as a specimen or focal point in a location with full sun. It grows best in sandy, well-drained soil with additional water during summer dry spells. Keep well watered during the first growing season to ensure it establishes a deep, extensive root system.
At youth, the leading shoot should be trained up a cane. It will tolerate sunny and partially shaded conditions. In the winter months, it needs shelter from freezing winds.
Narrowly upright pyramidal.
ID Characteristic
It has a dense, narrow, columnar habit and pendulous branches. Needles are glossy, dark green and gold, with stomatic lines on both sides. Cones are 5-10 cm long, red-purple when young, brown when mature. It needs protection from harsh winds; in extreme cold, it can develop brown tip burn. This is a lovely specimen tree for smaller properties.
Strong resistance to insects and diseases. Mites, aphids and bagworms are the most common pests.
Horticultural origin.
Bark/Stem Description
Dull grey bark. Thick and strong at the base; as it matures it turns more greyish brown.
Flower/Leaf Bud Description
Greyish brown on surface, more reddish brown beneath with irregular, fine flaky patches, becoming irregularly ridged and furrowed.
Leaf Description
Leaves are radial and 6-8 mm long blunt pointed, very thin. Yellow on new growth and dark green on old.
Flower Description
Male flowers are crimson-scarlet in colour.
Fruit Description
Chestnut brown cone, 5-10 cm long, cone scale margins entire; seed disseminated in the autumn and cones tend to drop their first winter.
Colour Description
Bright golden new leaves and shoots make a startling contrast to the dark green of the old foliage. Bark is a dull grey.
Texture Description
The bark texture is smooth at the trunk. Near the top of the shoot this bark has spikey needles, these needles are glossy and soft.
Notable Specimens
Gardens of Fanshawe College, London, Ontario, Canada. Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada.