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Looking for a Small, Narrow Thuja Cultivar

Posted by hoosierquilt z10a/23 Vista Calif (My Page) on
Sat, Apr 5, 14 at 18:52

I am trying to redesign my parterre garden area, and I need to find a better Thuja than the standard Arborvitae that were growing in my squares. I'm trying to find something very compact and small, that has a natural columnar shape. Golden tipped would be fantastic. Having a hard time finding what I'm looking for. I snapped a pic of this small thuja, cultivar unknown, growing at a public garden last fall, and this is what I'm basically trying to find:

 photo IMG_2823_zpsd1e71e68.jpg

The cultivar needs to stay quite small, and amenable to pruning if possible. I'm open to any suggestions. Currently, I have Pittosporum 'Elfin' growing in the corners of my parterre squares, but it is a little more finicky than Thujas, in general, and this spot is a little tricky, as half the squares in my garden get a fair amount of shade being closer to the house, and the other 2 squares get much more sun and less water. Thujas just seem to be more tolerant of varying sun and soil moisture levels. Any suggestions welcome. I'm in S. California, not too far from the ocean, and have a pretty mild climate year 'round.

Patty S.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Looking for a Small, Narrow Thuja Cultivar

For thuja: Thuja occidentalis 'Degroot's Spire'

For narrow yellow that can take sheering:

Juniperus communis 'Gold Cone'

RE: Looking for a Small, Narrow Thuja Cultivar

if you look at your own pic.. note the top growth.. is outgrowing the sheared growth from last year below ..

indicating to me.. it will grow ...what looks like at least 8 to 12 inches per year.. and possibly more in your zone ...

in other words.. the plant in the pic is a fraud...

unless you are willing to treat it as an annual.. and buy a new one every year...

it has way too much potential to be sheared back for the purpose shown .. and probably yours...

and if it grows 12 inches a year.. that means in ten years.. it will be 10 feet tall ...


RE: Looking for a Small, Narrow Thuja Cultivar

Here is a Cupressus macrocarpa 'Wilma', which was found as a mutation on a 'Goldcrest'.
At the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden
conifer in pot photo P5080338.jpg

RE: Looking for a Small, Narrow Thuja Cultivar

Thanks for the suggestions. Ken, I was looking for something similar to what I snapped in the photo, not necessarily that particular cultivar. Not worried about it being a "fraud", as I don't mind pruning, as long as it isn't a cultivar that wants to end up being 20'. Sluice that looks very much like what I saw. I'll check that out, as well as the other suggestions. I want the plant to stay at around 3 to 4 feet max. I don't mind pruning at all, as long as I'm not working with a cultivar that wants to end up being 20', as the trunk would eventually become so thick, it would outgrow the small squares in my parterre garden.

Patty S.

This post was edited by hoosierquilt on Sat, Apr 5, 14 at 23:52

RE: Looking for a Small, Narrow Thuja Cultivar

  • Posted by bboy USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA (My Page) on
    Tue, Apr 8, 14 at 17:30

Yes, golden Monterey cypress cultivar - that will grow much larger than in these pictures.

These are everywhere up here now, despite being burned by temperatures below, say 15 degrees F. When the apparent vogue for these first started they were offered mostly as indoor plants.

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