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The weeping Alaskan cedar tree care – If you’re a gardener, you may have a hard time picking just one favorite evergreen tree. That’s not my style. My favorite evergreen tree is the weeping Alaskan cedar, and if you ask, I won’t hesitate to tell you.
For botanists, Chamaecyparis nootkatensis (or the more recent Xanthocyparis) is recognized as the most frequent name for this tree. If you want to fall in love with the weeping Alaskan cedar as much as I have, I’d like to tell you more.
Is a weeping Alaskan cedar a rare tree?
It’s simple to understand why this tree is so beloved with just a quick glance. The flat-needled boughs have a delicate and airy appearance. Here, you won’t find any sharp or uncomfortable needles at all. The weeping blue Alaskan cedar is another name for this tree, which has a blue-green hue.
This tree’s weeping habit and gently pyramidal form make it an attractive landscaping plant. Tiny 1/3-inch cones form on adult plants throughout the growth season, but only on mature plants.
The Nootka false-cypress, also known as the yellow cypress, is more closely related to the cypress than it is to cedars, which is why the recent genus change I stated above occurred.
When do weeping Alaskan cedars reach their full height?
This kind of tree is native to North America’s northwest area and may be found in the wild from Northern California to Alaska. Cultivars of Chamaecyparis nootkatensis, particularly the one known as “Pendula,” have become widespread in home gardens throughout the United States (more on this later).
After decades of development, weeping Alaskan cedars may reach a height of 100 feet and a width of 20 to 30 feet in the wild. However, in garden settings, they tend to reach a height of 30 feet and a spread of half that.
Is it possible to grow an Alaskan cedar in our garden?
Because of their great size and exquisite branch spread, these magnificent trees should not be crammed into a confined area (unless you’re using the dwarf cultivar “Green Arrow”). Make way for these trees to shine.
Choosing a location that gets a lot of sunlight can help you save money in the long run. Moisture in the soil, but not standing water, is essential for the optimal setting. This tree thrives in low-lying areas where the soil is consistently wet. Standing water, on the other hand, should be avoided at all costs.
Choosing a place that isn’t exposed to heavy winter winds is also important. If your winters are exceptionally cold and windy, strong winds might induce needle or branch desiccation and possibly dieback. Even though the weeping Alaskan cedar can withstand freezing temperatures, it struggles in locations with heavy winds.
The variants of weeping Alaskan cedar
There are a number of cultivars of this plant that are widely available in the nursery trade.
1. The “Pendula” variety is the most widely available cultivar of Chamaecyparis nootkatensis, particularly in the eastern United States. It’s a pleasure to have two in my Pennsylvania garden. In this specimen, the branches are much more pendulous, with the lowest branches often dipping down to the ground. It’s a beautiful evergreen. This cultivar may reach a height of 35 feet and a diameter of 12 feet.
2. The “Green Arrow” weeping Alaskan cedar quite popular because of its thin, spire-like growth habit. If you have a tiny yard or garden, the “Green Arrow” is the perfect choice. It has a height of 20 feet and a width of 2 feet. It gives the scene a powerful, vertical focal point.
Taking care of a weeping Alaskan cedar tree
It’s fortunate that these trees need little in the way of care and upkeep.
- Maintain a 2-to 3-inch layer of crushed hardwood mulch around the plant. This keeps the soil wet and reduces competition amongst weeds. The trunk of this or any other tree should not be covered with mulch.
- Pruning weeping Alaskan cedars is not recommended. When it’s pruned incorrectly, its beautiful shape might be damaged. Give your weeping Alaskan cedar as much space as possible to thrive. As a result, you won’t have to prune it at all.
- Keep the tree well-watered until it has a chance to grow and mature. Once established, you won’t need to provide any further water unless there is a prolonged period of drought.
- Weeping Alaskan cedar trees should be fertilized with an acid-specific organic fertilizer every few years.
An Alaskan weeping cedar tree’s plight
Fortunately, the weeping Alaskan cedar is not plagued by many issues. They are resistant to pests, which adds to their appeal. Though I sometimes notice a bag-worm or two clinging to the trees, there are no major pests in the landscape.
Occasionally, spruce mites pose a threat. As long as your garden is filled with blooming plants, mites are seldom a problem.
Although the weeping Alaskan cedar can take roadside pollutants, I recommend keeping it away from sidewalks, roads, and driveways that are regularly treated with road salt in the winter. Alternatively, you may use an ice melt that is safe for plants and pets.
The weeping Alaskan cedar is an excellent evergreen tree that should be a part of any garden. Make sure you’re at the correct location and have the necessary circumstances. One of these beauties may be yours; you’ll be able to appreciate its beauty for years to come.