How to Plant Norway Spruce Trees


The Norway spruce is a popular evergreen conifer that is hardy in USDA growing zones 3 through 7. As per the name, the tree is native to areas in northern and central Europe. Norway spruce trees prefer cool and moist climates; however, established trees can handle seasonal periods of drought. The tree is a fast-growing variety that produces a pyramid shape with a height of 80 feet and spread of 40 feet.

Step 1

Select a planting location that has a well-draining, slightly acidic clay or sand loam. The location should also offer full sunlight and good air circulation.

Step 2

Test the soil pH. The Norway spruce prefers a pH of 5.0 to 7.5, so mix ground rock sulfur into the planting area to lower the pH if needed, then let the soil rest for two weeks prior to planting.

Step 3

Dig a hole twice as wide as the root ball and the same depth. Mix organic compost into the removed soil to increase the nutrient content and water draining ability.

Step 4

Set the tree into the hole and fill it half full of amended soil. Add water to settle the soil around the root ball. Fill the hole with amended soil and gently pack it in place to prevent air pockets.

Step 5

Water the tree generously after planting and daily for the first two weeks. Continue to water the tree weekly during the hot summer months and periods of drought. Soak the soil to a depth of 10 to 14 inches at each watering.

Step 6

Fertilize the tree in the spring with slow-release balanced fertilizer tablets. Another option is to use a water-soluble 10-10-10 fertilizer twice a month in the spring and once a month in the summer.

Step 7

Remove weeds and grass in a 2-foot diameter around the tree to reduce competition for moisture. Apply a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch around the tree after the first year of growth, leaving a 6-inch gap between the start of the mulch and the base of the tree.

Things You'll Need

  • Soil pH test
  • Ground rock sulfur
  • Shovel
  • Organic compost
  • Water
  • Slow-release fertilizer tablets
  • 10-10-10 balanced fertilizer
  • Mulch


  • University of Florida: Norway Spruce
  • Ohio Department of Natural Resources: Norway Spruce
  • North Carolina State University: Picea abies
Keywords: plant Norway spruce, grow Norway spruce, Norway spruce evergreen

About this Author

Jennifer Loucks has over 10 years of experience as a former technical writer for a software development company in Wisconsin. Her writing experience includes creating software documentation and help documents for clients and staff along with training curriculum. Loucks holds a Bachelor of Science major from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls specializing in animal science and business.