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We are looking at putting in an offer on a house, however, it has a large tree in the back garden and we are looking to see how hard it would be to care for it over the years. We don't have a clue as to what type of tree it is so if you would be able to help us with this and any hints on upkeep that would be amazing thanks.

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    Can we get a close uo picture of the needles?
    – kevinskio
    Mar 15, 2020 at 11:29
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    I would like to see a picture of the entire tree from a distance. I think it's a Norway spruce, but the tree form is a key in identifying the species. If a Norway spruce, you won't have any maintenance.
    – Jurp
    Mar 15, 2020 at 20:51

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It is certainly some very spruce-like tree. The exact type is difficult. Note that there are many varieties of spruce tree.

As to care required: It is not ordinarily a high maintenance tree. You won't need to do much for it. It looks like a well established mature tree. You won't need to water it or prune it. It will provide shade and attract birds and squirrels.

They are quite hardy trees, able to cope with a wide range of weather from a very dry hot summer to an extremely cold windy winter.

When I lived on the farm, more than 40 years ago, one of the spruce trees was hit by lightning. The heat split the trunk for several meters and drove splinters of heart wood out through the crack. The tree grew over the split and is still alive and well today.

The dropped needles and cones are not a huge volume relative to, for example, leaves from a maple tree. We never bothered to try to rake them, just went over them with the lawn mower. The grass near the spruce trees was always quite healthy.

If it was me, the spruce tree would be a big plus in favor of the house.

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  • Heh. I only just noticed how old this question was.
    – Boba Fit
    May 1, 2023 at 18:15
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Most likely it is spruce, but to be positive I would need photo of back side of green needles, bark.

You can always cut down the tree, sell the wood and plant some other trees more suitable for back garden - like Japanese maple.

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The droopy needles I think I see in the pictures remind me of Norway spruce. (Clearer pictures of needles, bark, and cones would be beneficial for accurate identification.) Mature Norway spruce is basically a no-maintenance tree, I believe, when it reaches that size. Younger trees need protection from weed competition, but that large a tree is far beyond the weed competition stage.

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