Need suggestions for small or intermediate conifer tree (please?)

christianlynnJuly 10, 2008

Hello. My husband and i love the Cedrus Deodora and hope to find a variety of it, or something similar, that we can plant near the corner of our house. The problem is that we may be in this house for some time and the space will not accommodate a 70-foot tree. Another problem IÂm running into is that most of these trees seem to be of slow growth. As a result, we would rather purchase a tree thatÂs already around 8-10 feet tall, rather than waiting 10 years for it to fill the space, but that seems harder to find. Ultimately, weÂre thinking we would like the tree to max out to be around 20 feet (or less). I've heard that 'Snow Sprite' might be a good choice as it is a dwarf, but most of what I've read about it says that it's mounding rather than the Christmas tree shape we're looking for. Also, i'm thinking it might be too small? Can anyone recommend a variety of Deodora or something else with the same graceful, Christmas tree shape and appearance? WeÂre really new at this, and any advice would be greatly welcomed. Thank you!

PS We are in SunsetÂs zone 15, and the tree would be in the sun. Also, weÂre not too picky about the color (blue, green, white, etc.)  thanks again âº

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Won't be easy. Generally, trees that grow "Christmas tree shape" will get too large in the long term. One you could try that won't get too large is Cupressus glabra (Smooth Arizona Cypress), nice tree, though not so graceful as Deodar.

PS spellcheck: deodara


    Bookmark   July 10, 2008 at 7:06PM
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Thank you, i'll look into that one. Also, someone suggested a "silver mist" deodara, but i've found conflicting information on how big they get. Does anyone know? Beautiful tree though. - ChristianLynn

    Bookmark   July 14, 2008 at 11:42PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

There are dwarf upright Himalayan cedars on the market. Retail outlets won't have the same selection now as in spring but try some that have a good line of conifers, see what they have.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2008 at 1:20AM
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picea(6A Cinci- Oh)

Other options would be Cedrus Atlantica 'Horstmann' which is slower growing that the species or Cedrus atlantica'Glauce Fastigiata' which will get taller that 8' but will stay narrow.


    Bookmark   July 17, 2008 at 9:50PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Plants sold as 'Glauca Fastigiata' grow into full-sized trees over 90' tall, half again as wide.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2008 at 10:51PM
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bluespruce53(Dorset UK)

Cedrus atlantica glauca 'Fastigiata (at least here in the UK) grows as high as the species but stays very narrow and a lot more compact in comparison, certainly not half again as wide.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2008 at 1:48AM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Becomes more spreading with age.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2008 at 2:33PM
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bluespruce53(Dorset UK)

Not here it doesn't

    Bookmark   July 18, 2008 at 2:59PM
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Can these trees, weeping deodara cedrus, be trimmed? I wanted to plant out front of our house to hide a three story wall, but I don't want it to take up our whole front of yard. The spread is 15 to 20 feet but if trimmed back can I plant it closer to house? Thanks.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 4:52PM
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You can do anything you want, but it doesn't make it right. Most conifers do NOT like to be trimmed for extreme size maintenance, and you often times can severely damage them. This said, I know nothing about this variety in paticular, and very little in regard to Cedrus species in general as most don't grow well around here. I haven't tried any YET, so I can't give you any advise on trimming likes/dislikes.

If spacing is an issue there are many other nice weeping options such as Abies alba 'Pendula', Picea omorika 'Berliner's Weeper' and 'Bruns Pendula' (very narrow, one of my favorites), Chamaecyparis nootka 'Van der Akker' or 'Moon Shot', along with many Tsuga varieties just to name a couple.

One suggestion though, start your own post with the question and you will get many more and much better responses. Be sure to include your location info. I just gave you several suggestions for Zone 5 west central Ohio, NOT Miami, Florida!!!


    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 5:28PM
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This is kind of the traditional 'impossible' request. A tree that's already of considerable size(8'), yet won't outgrow 20' in a long time. The thing is, most conifers grow at a fairly steady rate, so they won't 'stop' growing at 20', etc.

Now the option I do see here is a weeping variety of Cedrus.

Cedrus atlantica 'Glauca Pendula' may be overused, but would certainly fit here, you can just stake it up to the desired height(even 20' if you had a tall ladder), and then let it weep down and it wouldn't get taller then whatever height you staked it to.

A couple of other cedrus you can get that will perform similarly are Cedrus deodara 'Emerald Falls' - the same more or less as the tree listed above only the needles are green.

Cedrus libani 'Beacon Hill' is another weeping variety, though it isn't as straight down weeping as the two listed above.

If you're OK buying a 2-3' tall specimen, certainly many of the dwarf cedars will fit here, or at least will almost never reach 20' in our lifetime. Cedrus deodara 'Snow Sprite', 'Cream Puff', 'White Imp', etc. should all do fine - though they may get 5-6' wide or more in time.

Hope that helps,


    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 11:41PM
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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

I'm not very knowlegable with cultivars of Cedrus deodara but I can offer at least one picture:

Cedrus deodara 'Eisregen' at Gee Farms, Michigan.

Greer Gardens is selling 5 foot trees for appx. 55 bucks including shipping, currently. I just bought one:


    Bookmark   May 4, 2009 at 9:05AM
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hey gardener365, is that 5 footer from Greer Gardens 'Eisregen' or another variety? On the website I couldn't find that $55 price...Could you please direct me? Thanks, Mike

    Bookmark   May 6, 2009 at 2:18PM
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