Abies koreana 'Kohouts Icebreaker' / Ice Breaker™ Korean fir

Abies koreana 'Kohouts Icebreaker' is a very fine, relatively new, dwarf cultivar of Korean fir. Like its parent plant, 'Horstmann's Silberlocke,' 'Kohouts Icebreaker' has the same strongly-curled needles showing off the silvery undersides that make the species distinctive. Branches are short, stubby and radial. Young plants will be globose, later developing a leader, eventually becoming a small squat tree. Typical rate of growth in most areas is 1 to 3 inches (2.5 - 7.5 cm) per year, resulting in a shimmering silvery specimen, 2 feet (60 cm) tall and wide after 10 years in the garden.

Jörg Kohout of Elstra, Germany is credited with the origin and introduction of this cultivar. Ice Breaker's ortet was a witch's broom that Jörg found on a specimen of Abies koreana 'Horstmann's Silberlocke' at his nursery. A distinctive trait of 'Kohouts Icebreaker' is its shimmering silvery recurved needles, which create a striking effect in the garden. This cultivar is one of two that were selected in 2014 for inclusion in the ACS Collectors' Conifer of the Year Program.

Abies koreana ‘Kohouts Icebreaker’ on a standard in the yard of the discover, Jörg Kohout, of Prietitz, Germany.
Photo by Bob Fincham
Photographed at Stanley & Sons Nursery display garden, Boring, OR.
Photo by Larry Stanley
Jörg Kohout with a specimen of 'Kohouts Icebreaker'
Photo by Sven Mühmelt
An attractive grouping of 'Kohouts Icebreaker' specimens at the Flora Wonder Arboretum, Gaston, Oregon.
Photo by David Olszyk
A 12-year old specimen of Abies koreana 'Kohouts Icebreaker' in a private garden in Olympia, Washington. Left unpruned, older plants will assume a dwarf conical shape.
Photo by David Olszyk