Thuja plicata (Western Red Cedar)

Thuja plicata (Western Red Cedar)


Bareroot from November to April

Pre-order Online »

Trees & Hedging
You can pre-order these plants from our webshop from 1st June, for delivery mid-November onwards.

Non-trade pricing

Price £ each (ex. VAT)
Height Age 1+ 25+ 100+ 500+ 1000+
2+2 1.02 0.66 0.59 0.56 0.51

Trade / wholesale enquiries

Discounted trade / wholesale prices are available upon request.
Please contact the office for a quotation or a trade price list.

Minimum order values
Please note that there is a minimum order value of £50.00 + VAT, excluding delivery, for existing customers and £75.00 + VAT, excluding delivery, for new customers. Orders under those values can be placed via Trees & Hedging, our online webshop.


Delivery to UK mainland is included for stock orders over £750 + VAT (subject to postcode surcharges). For full details on delivery, please view our delivery page.


Also sometimes known as the Giant Arbor-vitae, the Western Red Cedar was introduced into Britain from North America in 1853 as a parkland ornamental tree. A tall, narrow tree, it is a cypress, rather than a cedar. It has become a popular alternative to Leylandii as a fragrant evergreen hedge.

Site and soil

The Western Red Cedar does well in any well-drained soil and is very tolerant of shade. Does best in areas of high rainfall which give it the moist atmosphere it prefers.

Height and spread

After 10 years: 2.4m x 1.2m
After 20 years: 6m x 1.5m

Leaf and bark

The small, scale-like leaves are borne in flat sprays. They are dark green on the upper surface, paler beneath, and strongly pineapple scented. The bark is reddish, deeply fissured and fibrous. 

Flower, seed and fruit

The small flowers open in March, the females yellowish-green, the males red with pale yellow pollen. The cones are 1-2cm long, ripening from green to brown.


Hedges, shelter, ornamental tree. A good alternative to Leylandii if a slower growing, dense evergreen hedge is required. The very durable timber is both light and strong, and is used for cladding, roof shingles, ladders, garden sheds and rugby posts. Native Americans used Western Red Cedar for canoes and totem poles. The fibrous bark has also been used to make rope and clothing. 


The Western Red Cedar’s dense habit provides good shelter for birds in bad weather. Insects shelter in the deeply fissured bark and are a food source for birds.


Hedges should be trimmed twice a year in June and September to keep growth dense. If necessary, they can be cut back into old growth without creating bare patches.