With a girth that rarely exceeds 15' Arborvitae makes a nice, narrow evergreen for tight spaces or to form a natural hedge or privacy screen.
It's practically insect and disease free, easy to grow and can live for hundreds of years.
Arborvitae serves as a larval host to several butterfly and moth species including the Promethea silkmoth. Arborvitae also provides food and cover for birds, especially non-migrants looking for winter shelter.
Arborvitae has soft needles that give off a sweet scent when squeezed and gnarly, reddish-brown bark. Watch out for deer, though. They love this tree.
Fun fact: Arborvitae means “tree of life” because tea from the bark was used in the 1500s to prevent scurvy.
Arborvitae/Northern White Cedar
- Latin: Thuja occidentalis
- Pollinator value: Medium
- Current Height: 6-7 feet
- Mature height: 30-40 feet; 10-15-foot spread
- Light: Full sun to part shade
- Soil: Medium
- Foliage: Evergreen
- Lifespan: 400 years, give or take
- Landscape: Beautiful native natural hedge; specimen tree