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Can this conifer be saved?

SverigeSverige Posts: 21
Hi all,

Having removed an overgrown shrub which was impinging on a neighbouring conifer (pictured below), I'm left with a lopsided plant with one dead side.  Now this dead side of the conifer will be exposed to sunlight for most of the day (whereas previously it was shaded by its overgrown neighbour). My question is whether this plant will simply recover and regrow greenery in the currently brown/dead area, or if pruning will help, or is if simply a lost cause which will forever have a dead side?

The plant itself (sorry, not sure of type/name) is actually a nicely shaped Christmas tree style conifer, which would certainly be a nice one to keep, if it can be saved?

Thanks all!


  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 12,173
    I think you'll find it's probably had it's day, sadly.
  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,629
    Conifers will not regrow from brown wood [ except Yew ]
    How can you lie there and think of England
    When you don't even know who's in the team

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    May have been better saving the shrub and sacrificing the conifer! But hindsight is a glorious thing!
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • Paul B3Paul B3 Posts: 3,129
    Your tree is (or was) a nice shaped Picea glauca albertiana 'Conica' ; lacking epicormic (regenerative) dormant buds , it will NOT 'green-up' again on that side .
    There are several conifers which will regrow from 'brown wood' , but yours unfortunately is not one of them !
  • SverigeSverige Posts: 21
    Ok thanks all. A shame, but at least I have confirmation and don't need to leave it there looking sad all summer.  I'll look in the local garden centres to see if I can find something similar to replace it, because it would be a nice little tree if it were evenly shaped 🌲 
  • SverigeSverige Posts: 21
    Well I have tried to make amends by planting a new Picea Glauca "Conica" (thanks Paul for the correct name), which I bought in a local garden centre for around £15 yesterday. From what I understand this is such a slow-grower that it could be 20+ years before I have something similar to the one which was damaged, but I've got to try I suppose, and hopefully I can remember to stop anything impinging onto the little conifer to prevent damage in the future. 
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,980

    Isn't it great to have a reason to plant something new  :D  

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Paul B3Paul B3 Posts: 3,129
    Nice replacement !
    Keep checking for red-spider mite , especially with Piceas ; these are not the tiny red spiders commonly seen on walls , but a blood-red grub that sucks the life out of things .
    Yes , they are slow growers , but thirsty ; come from areas of very high rainfall .
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