Picea abies 'Lusk' / Lusk Norway spruce

Picea abies 'Lusk' is a perfectly symmetrical, globose selection of Norway spruce with dense, radiating branches and short, gray-green needles. After 10 years of growth, a mature specimen will measure 24 inches (60 cm) tall and wide, an annual growth rate of 2 inches (5 cm).

This cultivar originated as a witch's broom found in the 1980s by Randy Dykstra of Fulton, Illinois. Randy found the original broom tree on the grounds of Albany Cemetery, Albany, Illinois. In his field notes, Chub Harper describes the broom as, "small size, medium height, motherplant broken off in 1998."

This conifer has never been heavily promoted in the nursery trade. The exceptional specimen living in Iowa's Bickelhaupt Arboretum may be one of the only known extant specimens.

Picea abies 'Lusk' — a mature specimen in Bickelhaupt Arboretum, Clinton, Iowa.
Photo by Dax Herbst
Picea abies 'Lusk' — an historic photo of the original witch's broom in Illinois.
Photo by Chub Harper archives