The genus Thuja contains about 6 species world-wide native to North America  and Asia . The word thuja comes from the Greek thuia, an aromatic wood (probably a juniper). The word occidentalis means western, referring to the western hemisphere (New World).
Other Common Names: Abendlandische lebensbaum, albero della vita americana, American arborvitae, arborvitae, arbre de vie de l'ouest, Atlantic red cedar, cedar, cedre blanc, cedro rosso dell'atlantico, eastern arborvitae, eastern cedar, eastern white cedar, gemeiner lebensbaum, gewone thuja, livstrad, Michigan white cedar, New Brunswick cedar, Noordamerikaanse levensboom, northern white cedar, swamp cedar, swamp-cedar, thuja, thuya de l'occident, tuia occidentale, tuya, tuya occidental, vanlig tuja, vitae, vit-ceder, western thuja, white cedar.
Distribution: Northern white cedar is native to Quebec (the Anticosti Islands and Gaspe’ Peninsula), New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, southwestern Nova Scotia and Maine, west to northern Ontario and southeastern Manitoba, south to southeastern Minnesota and northeastern Illinois, east to extreme northwestern Indiana, Michigan, southern Ontario, southern New York, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Also locally in central Manitoba and the Appalachian Mountains in western Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, western North Carolina, eastern Tennessee.
The Tree: Northern white cedar trees normally reach heights of 50 feet, with diameters of 2 feet. Exceptional trees may reach grow 80 feet tall, with a diameter of 5 feet. The record is 113 feet, with a diameter of 6 feet.**************************************************************************************************************************************************************
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We have thousands of arbs and always have hundreds ready for you to pickup. From 2' to 15' we have inventory balled and burlapped. Don't worry about driving long distances to get to us. We are easy to get to near Phila., on a major road, Rt. 313 in Fountainville Pa.. We want to move our stock and will make sure that you go home a happy camper. If you are coming from a long distance, we will give away free inventory that is surplus to our needs. One of our fields is being converted into ball and soccer fields and work will begin June 1, 2006. Stock in this field will go cheap. We will stay open til the last dog dies or we sell out. I think we have more stock than what we possibly can sell.
When you get to the nursery or garden center where you will buy your arborvitae, pick out the healthiest, most robust plants that have no evidence of disease or insect damage. The potting medium should be moist, but not wet, and the roots should well dispersed in the medium. Arborvitae that have roots growing from the drainage holes or circling the top of the pot are less desirable. Many people choose to buy arbs from a mail order company, which is perfectly acceptable. However, realize that most woody plants purchased from mail order catalogs will be shipped dormant and bare root, that is, without any soil attached to the root system. Such plants may be smaller in size because of the expense of shipping. It is important to plant such material immediately upon arrival. Generally it is best to purchase one-year-old material from mail order companies since this material is more vigorous and will transplant better. The larger material that is offered is often composed of the less vigorous plants held over from previous years. Most large sized arbs are balled and burlaped. Don't buy any arbs bare rooted over 3' tall. Any plant larger should be balled and burlaped.
Our Emerald Greens are 3-4' and starting to fill out well. These plants transplant easily. Arbs have masses of small fibrous roots which allows them to transplant at most times of the year. The Emerald Green has the best year round color, but is narrow in form. In real dry years this plant does not survive as well as the more open arbs such as the American, Techny, Nigra, and Elegantissma. This variety, because its foliage is more dense than other varieties, is less tolerant than more open cultivars. In an urban area with deer problems, this variety will be consumed before the next season. We have in stock and ready to pickup these arbs from seedlings (6-10") to 6-8' trees. We also have some potted 3' Emeralds Ready to go for $30 ea.
The Elegantissima arborvitae hedge is used used to buffer a street in front of our home. Note the strenth of this plant even with a heavy snow load. The only problem that this hedge has is salt spray from the road. Its a real sound barrier to a busy road which is only 18' from our door. The hedge is 15-18' high and only 4' wide. We have these arbs form 2-3' to 6-8' B&B.
This past spring my neighbor noticed that our arbs have produced mini-like pine cone looking nuggets, which are bronze in color, all over its branches. Some of them dried up and fell off, but most remained. He asked me if they could be lacking acid. He insisted that this was not the normal. He could easily see that there is plenty of new growth. He is worrying needlessly. The fruiting bodies are an indication of the plant’s maturity. Some are more prolific at producing than others. As long as the plants are maintaining their rich full green color there is nothing to worry about. In the past week there has been an increasing interest in landscape design for energy conservation. Rising fuel costs can be offset by landscaping. The primary goal is to control wind and sun. In Pa. the first line of defense for energy savings is protection from the cold winter winds by the use of landscaping. Research shows that properly designed screens and buffers can reduce the heating cost of a typical residence by as much as 30 percent. Arborvitae can work to also help cut your heating costs by using them for a wind screen.
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The hardiness zone for the green giant arborvita is from zones 5 to 8.
It is an evergreen with rapid growth rates that in ideal conditions can be up to 3 feet per year. Site requirements for the green giant is sun to partial shade, moist well drained soil but does well in clay, and needs protection from wind .
Its texture is fine with its form conical being narrow to broadly pyramidal, reaching from 50 to 80' in height to 15 to 20 feet in width. The leaf is rich, green,with graceful foliage. It keeps its foliage color in the winter. the green giants flowers/fruit are .5" erect female cones.
The green giant has strong wood, casts dense shade,and has cinnamon red bark when young. This arborvita does not tolerate salt spray. This arborvita should outlive even your children.