Friday, December 7, 2012

Dwarf Globe Conifers in the Landscape

Dwarf Globe Conifers are a beautiful addition to have in any landscape. Along with their varying colors and textures they are also the perfect size to fit into just about any landscape plan including entrance gardens,  evergreen and perennial gardens, poolscapes, rock gardens, Japanese gardens and more.   The terminology 'Globe' or 'Globosa' refers to any conifer that is "globe-like" or rounded in appearance.  Globose conifers come in a range of colors from blue to green to golden and all tend to stay relatively compact.  The American Conifer Society lists approximately 300 varieties of globe conifer of which 85% are dwarf.  The five species being discussed here today are hardy in a range of zones from 2-9,  are easy to maintain and all serve as wonderful focal points in the landscape. 
Picea pungens 'Montgomery'
  Picea pungens 'Montgomery' (Montgomery Globe Spruce) is a very slow growing dwarf conifer hardy in zones 2-8.    The dense vibrant blue-green foliage of this evergreen shrub provides year round interest and fits in nicely as part of a foundation planting, in a rock garden or poolscape.  Picea pungens 'Montgomery' thrives in full sun and prefers a moderately moist yet well drained slightly acidic soil.   It requires regular weekly watering or more in extreme heat and it is best not to allow this plant to completely dry out.  Picea pungens 'Montgomery' grows to a mature height and width of 3-4' and is known to be deer resistant.  Whether your garden is formal or informal this conifer is sure to make a statement.
Cryptomeria japonica 'Gobosa Nana' (Dwarf  Globe Cryptomeria)

Cryptomeria japonica 'Globosa Nana' is a dwarf evergreen conifer hardy to zones 5-7. It prefers full to partial sun and moderately moist, slightly-acidic soil which should not be allowed to completely dry out.   Crytomeria japonica 'Globosa Nana' has a slow growth rate and maintains a compact mounding growth habit.  At maturity this shrub will form a dense mound measuring approximately 2-3 feet in height by 4-8 feet in width.  Cryptomeria japonica 'Globosa Nana' serves nicely as a single specimen planting.  While most varieties of Cryptomeria grow to be quite large this specimen will give you the same beautiful lime green color with a compact plant.  This plant is also deer resistant.
Pinus strobus 'Nana' (Dwarf Eastern White Pine)

Dwarf Eastern White Pine is an evergreen conifer displaying soft delicate blue-green needles on a compact shrub.  Pinus strobus 'Nana' is hardy to zones 3-9, prefers full sun and a moderately moist slightly acidic soil.  Dwarf Eastern White Pine is slow growing reaching an eventual 3 feet tall by 4- 6 feet wide and is deer resistant.  This conifer goes beautifully just about anywhere whether it be a formal or informal garden.  This one is positioned by a poolscape.  No matter where you choose to display this specimen it is sure to be a hit.
Pinus Mugo 'Pumilio' (Dwarf Mugo Pine)

Pinus Mugo 'Pumilio' (Dwarf Mugo Pine) is a popular dwarf conifer displaying dark green needles on compact branches.  It is cold hardy to USDA zones 2-7 and prefers to be grown in full sun in a slightly-acidic well drained soil.  Dwarf Mugo pine is slow growing reaching an eventual size of 3-5 feet tall by 6-10 feet wide.  This shrub is often displayed in Japanese or rock gardens or as an evergreen border.  Dwarf Mugo Pine is relatively low maintenance requiring only occasional watering once established and it is also deer resistant. 
Dwarf Norway Spruce (Picea pungnes 'Pumila)

Hardy in zones 2-8, Picea pungens 'Pumila (Dwarf Norway Spruce) is an attractive slow growing evergreen shrub.  Dwarf Norway Spruce prefers to be grown in full to partial sun in a moist but well drained soil.  This shrubs grows to a mature height of approximately 3-4' and width of 4-6' and keeps a compact rounded form.  Picea pungens 'Pumila' fits in nicely into foundation plantings, rock gardens and Japanese gardens and is also deer resistant. Its dark green foliage interest to the landscape.

Add one or more of these dwarf conifers to your landscape and enjoy the benefits all year long.  Each of these globe conifers are unique in their own way adding much desired color and texture to your outdoor space. 

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90th post!

Author: Lee@A Guide To Northeastern Gardening, Copyright 2012. All rights reserved



  1. I've recently become interested in the dwarf conifers - small space, small(er) plants, and great year round color. These descriptions will help me plan my ever changing garden. thanks.

  2. You are welcome Claudia. I have loved having these evergreens in the garden for a long time. Each one is so beautiful and unique and provides good structure in the landscape.

  3. Congrats on your 90th post! I am so happy to know of some conifers that will grow in zone 9! I always think that they won't grow in such heat as is in my garden, and I am very glad to know otherwise! Love the different coloring variations, too.

  4. Thank you Holley and I am so happy for you that you can have some of these lovely evergreens where you are. It's hard to believe this is my 90th post already-time flies when you're having fun! Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment!

  5. Congrats on your 90th post! Thank you for the information on these lovely all of them!


Thank you for visiting. I love reading your comments and knowing you have been here, and will try to reciprocate on your blog. If you have any questions I will try my very best to answer them. As always...HAPPY GARDENING!