Norway spruce: structure and reproduction

In common spruce, the crown in the form of a cone is formed by outstretched or drooping branches. The bark of the spruce is reddish brown or gray.

The needles are dark green, tetrahedral, located singly, they remain on the tree for 5–7 years.

Norway spruce begins to bloom at the age of 25-30 years. Spruce also produces two types of cones – male and female. The purple-red or greenish young female buds appearing at the ends of last year’s shoots stick up vertically. Mature buds hang down, and after sowing the seeds, they fall off. Male cones are located below the female ones and are yellowish-brown in color.

Pollen develops in male cones, ovules in female cones. Ate bloom in May, and the cones ripen in October of the same year. Spruce seeds are winged, spilling out of the cones in spring (in March-April).

Spruce has a shallow root system that is located in the upper soil layer. If the spruce forest is not protected from the leeward side by a grove or by free standing trees, the wind often brings down spruces. Compared to pine trees, spruce grows in areas with richer soil nutrients, but does not tolerate waterlogging. Norway spruce is a very shade-tolerant plant. It can grow for a long time in the shade of other trees.

Common spruce has a lifespan of 200-300 years. It can reach 40 m in height.

Spruce wood is used in the production of musical instruments, it is also a valuable fuel.

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