Spruce brown-out solved

Gall adelgids are certainly a problem in these parts, especially on blue spruce.  But the ‘problem’ in this case is not a pest.  This year, as in several recent years, spruces are developing copious amounts of pollen cones.  Once the pollen is shed, the cones dry up and turn brown.  Many homeowners mistake these for insect galls or sign of some other pest activity.
In many conifers, pollen cones occur on the lower portion of the crown while seed cones occur in the upper third as an evolutionary adaptation to reduce selfing.

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