The variation in flowering abundance was studied in a Norway spruce seed orchard, located in southern Finland (62°13'N, 25°24'E), consisting of 67 clones from northern Finland (64°–67°N). The flowering variation in 1984–1996 was studied at the annual, clonal and graft level. In addition, the genetic diversity of an imaginary seed crop was estimated using a concept of status number. The between-year variation was large in both female and male flowering. Differences in flowering abundance among the clones were large and statistically significant in all the years studied. The average broad-sense heritability values for female and male flowering were 0.37 and 0.38, respectively, but varied considerably from year to year. The correlations between the flowering abundance of the clones in different years were usually positive and significant. However, the correlations for two pairs of successive good flowering years showed that the same clones usually flowered well in the first year in both pairs of years, and the other clones in the second year. The clonal differences in flowering could not be explained by geographic origin, but were more dependent on the graft size. Our results demonstrate that the variation in the ramet number, flowering abundance and pollen contamination must be included when estimating the genetic diversity of the seed crop in a seed orchard. The relative status number of the seed orchard was 84% of the number of clones when the variation in the ramet number was included. The relative status numbers after adjusting for the variation in female and male flowering were on the average 46 and 55%, respectively, and 59% when adjusting for both genders together. Pollen contamination increased the status number considerably.