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- Yoshino Japanese Cedar
Yoshino Japanese Cedar for Sale - Buying & Growing Guide
Yoshino Japanese cedar, Cryptomeria japonica 'Yoshino,' is a handsome specimen tree with a lovely, loose pyramidal form and feathery needles that add welcome texture and height to the garden. It has deep, thick foliage that is a beautiful soft green during the summer and may take on a bronzed tone in the winter. It is an adaptable tree that asks only for slightly acidic soil in which it will thrive, and it tolerates temperatures down to -10 degrees Fahrenheit. Even better, it has no tendency toward either pests or diseases and requires little extra care of any kind. Here are a few more reasons to love Yoshino Japanese cedar:
- Naturally symmetrical; needs little pruning for shape
- Deer avoid it and won't nibble on the branches
- Attractively peeling reddish-brown bark becomes more visible in winter
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Yoshino Japanese cedar grows best in full sun — six or more hours of direct light a day.
Water newly planted cedars every few days; mature trees need about an inch of water a week.
Fertilize with a slow-release formulated for acid-loving plants in spring.
Planting and Care
Site your tree in soil that drains well and receives at least six hours of sun a day. Yoshino cedar prefers slightly acidic soil but is adaptable. Unpot your sapling and tease out any encircling roots, which can girdle the tree and slowly kill it. Dig a hole that’s as deep as the root ball and twice as wide. Place the tree in the hole, spreading out the roots. Holding it upright and steady, fill in around the roots with topsoil, tamping down as you go to eliminate air pockets. Water thoroughly. Apply a two- to three-inch layer of organic mulch such as bark chips around the root zone to conserve moisture and hinder weed growth, but keep it from touching the trunk to avoid problems with rot.
Watering and nutrients
In its first year, water your tree every few days while it is establishing a strong root system. After that, you can taper back to a once-a-week watering, giving it an inch of water each time, unless you receive rain. Fertilize your tree with a product that is designed for acid-loving plants according to package instructions.
As a conifer, Yoshino Japanese cedar does not flower or set seeds as other trees do. Its reproductive organs are contained in small spherical cones about one inch in diameter that appear at the ends of branches.
Prune out any dead, diseased or damaged limbs whenever you see them. Other than that task, there is no need to prune your Yoshino Japanese cedar. It should naturally achieve an attractive, roughly pyramidal shape, although you may trim it lightly if you wish for a more formal look.
Pests and diseases
Yoshino Japanese cedar is not prone to any particular insect pests or diseases. A stressed tree might have issues with mites, but these should not harm the tree in any significant way. It is unlikely but possible that you could see signs of leaf blight or leaf spot. Trim out any diseased branches, and keep the area around the tree free of leaf litter and other debris. Water at the base of the trunk, and avoid wetting the foliage when possible.
Achieving maximum results
One way to achieve maximum results is to take the time to consider how you will integrate your Yoshino Japanese cedar into your existing landscape. With a mature height of up to 40 feet, it is not a small tree. Sso it might not be the best choice if, for example, you have a small urban yard. Having said that, it can serve as an excellent backdrop for other, smaller flowering trees in a larger yard or as a specimen plant carefully sited in a front yard. A line of these trees planted along a property line or near a home can be an excellent windbreak or privacy screen. As the national tree of Japan, it would certainly be at home in an Asian-inspired garden as well.
How big does Yoshino Japanese cedar get?
A Yoshino Japanese cedar can achieve a maximum height of 30-40 feet, with a width of 20-30 feet. It is a fast-growing tree, so it won't take decades to achieve significant growth. Note that it's a good idea to space it appropriately if planting near a structure such as your home, and avoid planting it under overhead utility wires or cables.
Where can Yoshino Japanese cedar be grown?
This sturdy tree can handle temperatures down to -10 degrees Fahrenheit and is considered hardy in USDA hardiness zones 5-8. That includes much of the continental U.S., save for the most tropical southern sections and northern New England and the Midwest.
How long does Yoshino Japanese cedar live?
These trees are fairly long-lived, especially for an evergreen, and there is evidence that they may thrive for well over 300 years. Caring properly for your tree, along with ensuring that it receives enough water and fertilizer, can help it live a long life.
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