Picea engelmannii 'Squaw Pass' / Squaw Pass Engelmann spruce

Picea engelmannii 'Squaw Pass' #36 is a dwarf, conical selection of Engelmann spruce with somewhat open branching and pendant tips. Foliage is species-typical gray green in color. After 10 years of growth, a mature specimen will measure 24 inches (60 cm) tall and wide, an annual growth rate of around 2 inches (5 cm).

This cultivar originated as a witch's broom found in the 1980s on Squaw Pass, which is along state highway 103, west of Denver, Colorado. Jerry Morris is credited with it's discovery and nomination, first designating it [#36], meaning that this was Jerry's 36th named Engelmann spruce selection. From his field notes, he describes the original broom as, "a broom, branch about 10’ up, 3’x3’, thick, double needles, almost pendulous, and no up tendencies at all, below a big curve corner ½ mile or so on the Squaw Pass." Nomenclature purists will list this conifer as, Picea engelmannii 'Squaw Pass' #36.

Picea engelmannii 'Squaw Pass' at Denver Botanical Gardens, Colorado; an ACS Reference Garden.
Photo by Nate Cassell