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How to Grow & Transplant White Spruce Trees

By Larry Parr ; Updated September 21, 2017
White spruce with pine cones
spruce image by kasiap from Fotolia.com

White spruce trees grow well in a wide range of soil conditions, which makes this tree an excellent choice for almost any garden. Choose a sunny location, as white spruce grow best in full sun, and choose a location with soil that is well-drained, as white spruce do not do well planted near standing water. Spruce are best transplanted when young saplings. Transplant in early summer. White spruce grows best in zones 2 through 6. White spruce is a slow-growing tree that can reach heights of 60 feet.

Choose a sunny location with well-drained soil and no standing water.

Spread 2 inches of organic fertilizer over an area at least twice the width of your tree's root ball.

Rotill the ground, breaking up the dirt and working the organic fertilizer into the soil. Rototill to a depth slightly greater than the length of the longest root on the sapling you will be planting and break up the soil at least twice as wide as the canopy of the sapling.

Fill in the hole to the depth of the longest root and then carefully place the tree into the hole, keeping the roots straight, and press soil around the roots until the entire hole is filled in. Water well. Keep the soil moist but do not saturate the ground. If planting more than one white spruce, plant them a minimum of 12 feet apart.

Spread 1 inch of organic fertilizer around your tree each spring, fertilizing the full width of the tree's canopy. Water well to get the fertilizer into the soil. No further fertilizing is required for the year. Water your white spruce sparingly, but do not allow the soil to completely dry. Your white spruce requires little additional care and will grow under a wide range of soil conditions.


Things You Will Need

  • Rototiller
  • Organic fertilizer


  • Once established, the white spruce can survive drought conditions well.


  • Do not over-fertilize.

About the Author


Larry Parr has been a full-time professional freelance writer for more than 30 years. For 25 years he wrote cartoons for television, everything from "Smurfs" to "Spider-Man." Today Parr train dogs and write articles on a variety of topics for websites worldwide.