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A while back you discussed that overall trimming of a Dwarf Alberta Spruce is problematic, perhaps impacting its survival. If I remember correctly, you recommended replacing the tree with a new planting is likely the best approach. What are your thoughts of the tree surviving a single horizontal cut, perhaps removing the top half or top third of the tree. Would the remaining center eventually "fill in" with new green growth, essentially converting the tree to a lower growing shrub? As you can see from the attached photo, these 15-18 year old are very healthy trees, hardly dwarfs any longer, and are beginning to block daylight from the front windows. Thank You in Advance. Mike


Dwarf Alberta Spruce Dear Mike,
I do not recommend cutting the Dwarf Alberta Spruce horizontally with one cut. It would look awful; the inside is all dead and it will not sprout new growth. Your tree would be left with weak, unstable limbs and a bare, unnatural appearance. It also could become infected with disease or fungus which would kill the tree.

"Dwarf" in plant language means the plant grows very, very slowly; not that they stay small. There are "Dwarf" Alberta Spruces over at Connecticut College that are 18-20' tall. Your only choice is to replace the Dwarf Alberta Spruce that you have with new, smaller ones. Good Luck.

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About Linda Lillie

Linda K. Lillie is the President of Sprigs & Twigs, Inc, the premier landscape design and maintenance, tree care, lawn care, stonework, and carpentry service provider in southeastern Connecticut since 1997. She is a graduate of Connecticut College in Botany, a Connecticut Master Gardener and a national award winning landscape designer for her landscape design and landscape installation work.


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