Japanese Cedar (Cryptomeria japonica)

This tall evergreen has blue-green needles that will turn bronze-purple in cold climates. The Japanese cryptomeria has a distinct pyramidal shape. The tree's bark is red-brown, and peels off into strips. This is the national tree of Japan, and is often planted at temples or shrines.

Family: Cupressaceae (Cypress)

Characteristics: Needles are blue-green, one-quarter to three-quarters of an inch long, and may develop a purple-bronze color in cold climates. Spherical cones appear at the ends of branches. Bark is red-brown and peels into strips. This tree has a pyramidal or conical shape and has a stout trunk. It grows 50-60 feet high and 20-30 feet wide.

Foliage: Evergreen (Foliage present year-round)

Geographic Origin: Southern China, Japan (non-native)

Cultivation Notes: Requires low maintenance. Does best in full sun, though can tolerate light shade. Prefers acidic, moist, and well-drained soils. Soil should not be left to dry out. It is best to also protect this tree from strong wind.

Number on Campus: 5

Sources: Dirr, Morton Arboretum, Missouri Botanical Garden