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SCIADOPITYS verticillata 'Wintergreen'

Image of Sciadopitys verticillata 'Wintergreen'

Mark A. Miller

Family

Sciadopityaceae

Botanical Name

SCIADOPITYS verticillata 'Wintergreen'

Plant Common Name

Japanese Umbrella-pine, Wintergreen Umbrella-pine

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

With long, flat needles arranged like radial spokes, the slow-growing Japanese umbrella-pine is an unusual but picturesque tree. From Japan, this evergreen is dense and compact when young and becomes more open with age, attaining a pyramidal shape that can be either tall and narrow or slightly rounded. Its bark is attractive, but since hidden by the foliage, the exfoliating plates and strips of reddish gray-brown are rarely enjoyed.

Cultivar 'Wintergreen' is more cold-hardy than the species and develops longer needles that remain rich green (not bronzed) across the winter months. It was selected by Sidney Waxman of University of Conneticut. The tree develops a very tight, spire- to cone-like habit.

The needles are arranged in whorls on the branches, tufted together in an upward manner to look like wind-distended umbrella skeletons. Each needle is long and narrow and feels of flexible plastic. In spring the branch tips are graced with separate male or female cones of brown. The male cones come in multiples and are held in tight clusters and the female cones are single and stand alone. The plump, oval female cones have chunky scales and are decorative. Trees don't set cones until they are of substantial age, so young trees are fruitless.

Grow 'Wintergreen' in full to partial sun and acid to neutral, well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. Slow-growing in any circumstance, this unusual gymnosperm should be protected from extreme cold, drying winter winds and excessive drought. The best application for this beautiful evergreen is as a specimen, or clustered group in a spacious border.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    8 - 3

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    A3, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Needled or Scaled Evergreen

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    20'-40' / 6.1m - 12.2m

  • Width

    15'-25' / 4.6m - 7.6m

  • Bloom Time

    Spring, Late Spring

  • Native To

    Japan

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Pyramidal

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    None

  • Flower Color

    Tan, Brown

  • Fruit Color

    Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green, Dark Green

  • Bark Color

    Sienna

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    Yes

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Exfoliating

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Foundation, Mixed Border, Topiary / Bonsai / Espalier

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No