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Engleman spruce survival

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snipologist:
Thank you all for the advice and warnings.  I bought a Sub-Alpine Fir in 2013 and it died during the winter of 2013 / 2014.  All needles browned, then new growth started, then the new growth died.  The Engleman is planted in pumice as Tom and Raydomz suggest.   The container is a one gallon nursery pot.  Owen, this is a R. Knight collected tree and I do notice leaf litter in the drainage holes.  I will gently remove it and get rid of the leaf litter.  Raydomz, I think your winters and mine are very similiar.  Thank you for your experience.  I will see what this one does.

The Hidden Gardens:
Yesterday I drilled  holes in the bottom of the collected trees. I know I should repot all of them but I thought this would help till I could get to all 150 of them. I drilled 3/16 holes in the bottom so it almost looks like a Anderson flat. Water flows though
the pumice now and washes out some of the unsifted pumice fines on the bottom. Thanks for the advice.

snipologist:
Just a bit of update.  The Englemann spruce is sitting in my mulch bed outdoors for the winter.  Its shaded but otherwise open to the weather.  In 2 days the night temp is said to go down to minus 4 so I will see if it makes it.  Looks alive so far but time will tell.

Jay:
Nice to hear that this one is still going.
All of us in the colder (OK, really cold) climates await the spring for our trees
J

snipologist:
Sorry to report the Englemann spruce has died.  It slowly declined from mid-summer onwards.  The lowest branch lost all its needles and then this continued up the tree.  By fall there were no needles left on any part so the tree was discarded.  Don't think I'll try another.  Black Hills spruce does fine for me despite being slow growers so I will do those and other spruces that I have been successful with.   

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