Virescens Western Red Cedar is a fast, upright growing variety of the towering West Coast native tree. It responds very well to shearing and easily creates a large privacy hedge. It can be carefully pruned for a formal look or less pruned for a more relaxed look that is still dense and thick.
USDA Hardiness Map
Which size is right for you?
Tree Pot: Starts at $4.99 per plant, healthy roots,
lowest starting cost, ~7 year wait
InstantHedge™: Starts at $350 per unit,
3-4’ or 5-6’ height, need 2 people to install, no wait
About Virescens Western Red Cedar
Virescens is similar to the straight Western Red Cedar with a few improvements that make it better suited to hedging. It was introduced to the market by Mitsch Nursery in Oregon in the early 1990’s. One feature that makes it stand out is its lustrous green foliage. Many Thujas will bronze or brown slightly in winter, but Virescens truly maintains a vibrant green color year-round. The needles are so glossy that they have a dewy appearance even when dry. The other noteworthy characteristic is the upright growth habit. Species Thuja plicata tends to be open and spreading, but Virescens grows tall with ascending branches. It grows to be more narrow than the species, which makes it idea for hedging as it tends to naturally grow into a hedge with minimal pruning. It does respond well to pruning, and can easily be shaped into a tight, formal hedge. It can also be pruned less intensively for a more casual appearance. Either way, it will form a thick, dense screen that provides privacy and muffles noise. Virescens is easy to grow and can tolerate both full sun and partial shade. It can tolerate many growing conditions but tends to grow best in moist soils. It has noted deer resistance, which gives it a huge advantage over Thuja occidentalis (a deer favorite). It has no serious disease issues.
Top Qualities of Virescens Western Red Cedar
- 1. Lustrous Foliage that is True Green Year-Round
- 2. Upright Growth Habit
- 3. Fast Growth Rate
- 4. Full Sun to Partial Shade
- 5. Low Maintenance with Some Deer Resistance