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.
The main reasons for buying protection is to protect the plants against:
When it comes to deciding what protection to choose the golden rule is to choose the product dependent on which pest you are protecting against. The below will help you in deciding what height of protection you will need.
Vole, Mice 20cm
Roe Deer, Muntjac 1.20m
Fallow Deer 1.50m
Pest & Minimum Protection Height
Protection Type Where more than one size is listed, the wider diameter protection is recommended for taller, bushier plants.
Support Required Taller support is recommended for use in sandier, lighter soils and wider/stronger support should be used at exposed sites.