Picea abies 'Lanham's Beehive' / Lanham's Beehive Norway spruce

Picea abies 'Lanham's Beehive' is a dense multi-stemmed selection of Norway spruce with a shapely oval form. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other landscape plants with less-refined foliage. The needles of 'Lanham's Beehive' are longer and thicker than other dwarf cultivars and they have a slight glaucous tint. These features, combined with prominent, cinnamon-colored stems and buds, create a dramatic effect in the garden.

After 10 years of growth, a mature specimen will measure 16 inches (40 cm) tall and 28 inches (70 cm) wide, an annual growth rate of 1 to 2 inches (2.5 - 5 cm). It tends to fill out right to the ground and therefore doesn't necessarily require facer plants in front. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 50 years or more.

This cultivar originated as a witch's broom found in 1994 by the late Gary Lanham near Lebanon, Kentucky. The broom was nearly 10 feet high in a mature Picea abies. Intrigued by the interesting beehive form, Gary took it to Klein's Nursery in Louisville, and from there, it made its way to Iseli Nursery where it went into production and introduced to the nursery trade.

Picea abies 'Lanham's Beehive' photographed at Cornell Plantation, Ithaca, New York, during the 2007 ACS Northeast Regonal Meeting.
Photo by Sean Callahan
Picea abies 'Lanham's Beehive' — a closeup of foliage detail.
Photo by Bill Barger
Picea abies 'Lanham's Beehive' — a mature plant in an arboretum setting.
Photo by Bill Barger