Are there any Blue Leaf Trees?
The Surprising Truth!

Trees with colorful leaves look amazing, don't they? But are there any trees with blue leaves?

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Jimena Bolívar

July 11, 2021


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Introduction

Have you ever come across trees with peculiar colors? Perhaps these trees appeared yellow, pink, purple… or even blue! I have always been fascinated by them. But are blue trees really real? Are the leaves of such trees actually blue or do they just appear like that because of illusional flowers or distinct characteristics?

There are no trees with blue leaves. However, some characteristics may make the green leaves appear blue. The blue spruce and the blue atlas cedar are the two most common trees with leaves that appear bluish-white. Some trees are also coated with tiny hairs, making their green leaves appear blue. 

Trees usually considered to have blue leafs

1. The Blue Spruce Tree

The Blue Spruce is a cone-shaped Christmas tree!

The closeup of a blue spruce tree leaf

The blue spruce tree is a type of pine tree that grows slowly. It has needle-shaped leaves which may appear blue froma. distance, although they are waxy gray-green.

If you live in North America or you’ve been there, you must have come across the blue spruce tree because it’s native to that region. 

What makes the blue spruce tree leaves appear blue?

If you look closer, the blue spruce tree leaves are not completely green. But they aren’t blue either. The leaves of this tree have a lot of wax. It is this wax-like substance that causes the leaves to appear blue-white. The whitish appearance comes from the wax, and thus gives an illusion of blue-white.

2. The Blue Atlas Cedar Tree

The blue atlas cedar tree is one of the easiest to maintain!

An aerial view of the blue atlas cedar trees

The Blue Atlas Cedar, or the Cedrus Atlantica is named after Northern Africa’s Atlas Mountains. It even exists in the form of a weeping tree, with needle shaped leaves that may appear blue.

This tree has a very strong trunk and an average height. If you have a very large backyard, you can easily grow this tree without hesitation.

Are there any other plants with blue foliage?

There's more to the blue leaves story than just the blue spruce tree and the blue atlas cedar!

Some succulents and other plant species have blue leaves or gray-green leaves giving a blue effect.

Some succulent leaves have a dusty coat on top of them. This is not actually dust, but rather wax that is produced naturally to shield the plant from harsh sunlight and other conditions. Although these plants are not trees, their leaves give the effect of blue nonetheless. This could be either due to the absence of chlorophyll or because of the presence of a waxy coat.

Here are a few succulents that may look blue because of their gray-green foliage:

1. Euphorbia

The leaves of a Euphorbia plant

Euphorbias can be found in many locations across the globe. But primarily, they are native to South America, Asia, Africa, Europe and even North America.

2. Yucca

The tall green leaves of a yucca plant, with slightly yellow edges

The Yucca plants exist both as shrubs and trees. This plant has sword-shaped leaves that thrust upward. In both the shrub and tree forms, the plant produces white flowers. However, the leaves may appear blue either when they’re younger or they have a wax coating on top of them.

3. Agave

A closeup fo agave plant leaves, with bluish, pinkish and red tints

The Agave has many types of species. Basically, this succulent plant is capable of growing anywhere. It has rounded leaves, that may appear pointed, with tiny spikes following the edges of each leaf.

4. Sedum

A sedum plant leaves that appears blue-stained and has pink-purplish edges

The sedum plant has light green leaves, coated with wax that appears blue. It has pinkish-purplish edges, that are slightly more curved than that of an agave succulent plant.

5. Dusty miller

A dusty miller plant with leaves looking snowy white

The dusty miller is a succulent that has silver-gray foliage. Although this appears mostly white or silver, it could cast color if the green color from chlorophyll is hidden by the waxy substance.

6. Cushion Bush

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So the green-gray color of the above succulents sometimes casts the illusion of blue color.

What about plants or trees with blue flowers?

We've talked about blue leaves, but what about blue flowers?

No trees produce pure blue flowers in nature. However, varying shades of lavender and cool tones may make the flower-producing trees appear to have blue blooms.

Here are a few trees and plants whose flowers are purplish (but the gradient in their hues can make them appear blue too)! For instance, lavenders don’t grow on trees, but on plants in fields. Lavender flowers are purple-pink in color. But some flowers may have be purple toward the bluish side. 

Why do tree leaves appear blue?

Some trees may have bluish leaves due to chlorophyll!

Some trees have delayed process of greening in leaves, which leads to a reduction in chlorophyll.

Chlorophyll is an element found in leaves. It is responsible for making the leaves appear lush green. In some trees, especially in younger leaves, the chlorophyll process may be delayed, which makes them appear blue.

However, the color blue is almost very rare. The most common colors because of lack of chlorophyll are red, violet or other warm tones. You could expect to see such chlorophyll-deprived shades during the fall season. 

Are there any other reasons for the leaves to appear blue?

There is more than one reason for tree leaves that appear blue!

A succulent with leaves that look waxy and blue-green

Plant conditions and infections like powdery mildew or dust may reflect a bluish appearance of tree leaves.

Powdery mildew is a type of infection that can cause white spots on leaves. Although this may not change the color of the leaves, but it may cause an illusion. 

Conclusion

Hence, there are no trees with actual blue leaves because blue pigmentation does not exist in these trees. So the next time you see trees with blue leaves, remember that it’s not their true color! Some leaves may appear blue because they’re younger and haven’t developed chlorophyll as much. On the other hand, there are some trees like the blue atlas cedar and the blue spruce that seem to have bluish leaves, but are not entirely blue. These leaves have a hint of white to them. 

So although there are no blue trees, there are many pink trees out there! Have a look at these fascinating pink trees and how you can grow one in your garden!

14 Most Beautiful Pink Flowering Trees [with pictures!]

Pink flowers add a light and beautiful feeling to any garden space. Look at these low-maintenance wonderful pink flowering trees!

Jimena Bolívar Picture

By Jimena Bolívar

Easy Succulents Founder

My name is Jimena and I'm the the founder of Easy Succulents! I'm fascinated by this wonderful plants and I want to share with the world everything I know about them!

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Jimena Bolívar Picture

Jimena Bolívar

Easy Succulents Founder

My name is Jimena and I'm the the founder of Easy Succulents! I'm fascinated by this wonderful plants and I want to share with the world everything I know about them!

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