Photographer & Copyright

© Mary Krieger

Photo Source

CC BY 4.0

Inclusion in Plant ID / Comparison Guides

This photo is featured in 2 plant ID/comparison guides:

collage of White Spruce and Red Spruce

White Spruce (Picea glauca) vs. Red Spruce (Picea rubens)

Updated December 29th, 2019

White and red spruce are usually relatively easy to distinguish by their foliage color and cones, but they can be confused because they have a similar shape. In the northeast, where red spruce can also be found at low elevations, both species often occur together in the same habitats.

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collage of White Spruce and Balsam Fir

White Spruce (Picea glauca) vs. Balsam Fir (Abies balsamea)

Updated December 29th, 2019

Balsam fir and white spruce are sometimes confused where they overlap; balsam fir grown in sun can have a similar bluish color to its foliage and the needle shape and arrangement can look more similar than when in shade. Both can occupy late stages in forest succession and be found in similar habitats. The two species are easily told apart by a close look at their needles, by crushing and smelling the needles, by cones, and by bark.

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