Thuja Western: planting and care (photo)

Thuja Western: planting and care (photo)
Thuja Western: planting and care (photo)

Thuja is a coniferous plant and belongs to the Cypress family. Its genus includes trees and shrubs of five species. In our country, only one is popular among gardeners - Western thuja (thuja occidentalis). Read about its varieties, their cultivation and care in the article.

Tuja Western: photo and description

This plant is a beautiful tree that reaches 15 or even 20 meters in height. The specimens growing in the wild are even higher, but they can be found very rarely. Thuja Occidentalis has an ovoid or pyramidal crown and a compact root system. Monoecious flowers are not decorative. They alone crown the tops of the branches, so the flowering does not look lush. Small cones one centimeter long are egg-shaped. Each contains two seeds with yellow wings.

thuja western

A young plant has smooth, brick-brown bark. In a mature thuja, it acquires a gray-brown hue. Ten-year-old specimens have a bark of a fibrous structure, on which deep longitudinal cracks are clearly visible. Wood is durable andsoftness. On the saw cut, it has a reddish tint with yellow, brown or red patches in the form of veins. It does not undergo the process of decay, there is no resin in it. Thuja wood is ideal for furniture production, but has not been used in this area due to the slow growth of the plant and the fibrous bark.

Thuja Western: description of needles

Like all trees, this ornamental plant is leafy. In Western thuja, it looks like green, small needles, the length of which reaches two to four millimeters. It is scaly, densely covering the branches of the tree. The life expectancy of such foliage is two to three years, after which it begins to fall off in small twigs. This does not happen immediately, but gradually. The crown is updated imperceptibly. Before the onset of winter comes its discoloration. The crown becomes yellowish green or brown. Thuja Western (photo below) is called the "evergreen" plant relatively. For example, in pine and spruce, the shade of needles does not change in winter, but in most varieties of arborvitae it becomes different.

thuja western photo

Plant varieties

Thuya Zapadnaya is grown as a tree and as a shrub. It is frost-resistant and shade-loving species. In natural conditions, the places of growth are the banks of rivers and swampy areas. Therefore, in culture, it is not demanding to care, for which it is popular among gardeners. This tree is a decoration of any landscape. Thuja Western (occidentalis) is distinguished by a variety of varieties. To choose what you want, you shouldget information about them. Below are some varieties of Western arborvitae.


This variety of arborvitae is an evergreen coniferous tree with a high decorative effect. Thuja Western Smaragd has a symmetrical, dense crown, the diameter of which is about two meters. In culture, the tree is given a columnar shape, although in its natural form it resembles a cone. Scaly needles with a shiny surface have a dark emerald color. The tree has a small height, only five meters, and slow growth. For a year it adds 10 cm in height, and five in width. The fruits are brown cones, the size of which is less than a centimeter.

thuja western emerald

The life expectancy of the Western Smaragd thuja is 150 years. This tree is unpretentious, can easily adapt to any weather conditions and grow in soils with any composition. But loam is preferable, as well as soil containing lime. It grows well in urban conditions, withstands frost, but in the early spring it gets burned from the rays of the sun, so the plant needs to be covered. It is very important to shake off the snow from the branches after the snow falls, as the crown may be damaged.

For planting thuja, it is better to choose a lighted area, although it also tolerates shade well. In places where it grows, the surrounding air is purified and ionized. The plant is not only beautiful, but also useful, so its plantings can be found in parks, gardens, and home gardens. This variety of culture is so decorative that it was noted by the organizers of the exhibitionmedal. The international event took place in 2008 in Warsaw.


This thuja is a coniferous evergreen tree. It belongs to the columnar and fast-growing varieties of this species. Columna is the only species whose height reaches eight meters. In length, the growth per year is 20 cm, in width - from four to six. Life expectancy reaches 200 years. The width of the vertical crown can grow up to one and a half meters. The scaly needles are dark, with a characteristic sheen that does not disappear even in winter. The fruits are round brown cones. Their narrow seeds are flat.

thuja occidentalis

This thuja variety is unpretentious, but grows poorly on compacted soils. This tree needs moist soil. It can grow in sunlit areas and in the shade. A crown that receives a lot of sun will have a high density, its color will be bright. In a tree grown in the shade, it loses its density. Among all Western thujas, this variety is the most cold-resistant. Due to its decorative properties, it is used to create living fences.


This thuja is a dwarf plant, its height is from 60 to 80 cm, and the crown is wider - one meter. Thuja Western Danica was bred by breeders from Denmark, which determined its name. The spherical crown has a rich green color with a sheen. But in winter, the needles become brownish. The culture has increased frost resistance, is not demanding on growing conditions. Feels great in any climate. Thanks to the dwarfshape does not need pruning. Thuja Occidentalis Danica is an ideal plant for decorating a small garden plot, alpine slide or patio.

thuja western danica


This type of plant is an evergreen coniferous shrub with a round shape. Its height and width reach one and a half meters. Differs in slow growth, but life expectancy is long - 200 years. Annual growth in height and width is no more than five centimeters. The dense crown is spherical, the brown fruit is round.

Scaly, dark needles are quite large. The shrub is very decorative, so it is often used for low fences, in plantings in groups, as well as for single growth. It grows both in lighted, calm areas, and in the shade. This thuja prefers soil in the form of fertile loams, does not tolerate stagnant water in the soil. Responds well to top dressing and tolerates frosty winters.


This thuja is a fast growing tree with excellent decorative qualities. The growth per year is 30-40 cm in height and 15 in width. Thuja West Brabant grows up to 15 m, although it can be higher - 21 m. But in our climate it is a stunted tree, reaching a height of only four meters.

thuja western brabant

The crown is compact, with a large number of branched legs, some of which sometimes fall to the ground surface. Its shape is conical. The green needles are very bright, even in winter. Trunk coveredreddish-brown bark, which has the ability to exfoliate. Thuja West Brabant tolerates frost well, grows on any soil, blooms luxuriantly from April, after which brown egg-shaped cones form. Single plants are used in the design, and they are also used to create living fences.

Golden Globe

This is a dwarf shrub with a dense, spherical crown. Its thick shoots stretch upward, they are straight and flat. The large, scaly needles have a yellow-green color with a golden hue. An adult shrub reaches a height and width of just over a meter, grows slowly.

Roots lie close to the surface of the soil. Like all arborvitae, it prefers loam and does not like excessive waterlogging. Grows in sun and shade. In the latter case, the golden color will disappear, the color of the needles will remain rich green. Tolerates frost. Used in landscape design to create decorative compositions, borders, hedges.

Planting with seeds

This method is rarely used due to the fact that decorative qualities will not be transferred to new plants in full. The seeds will grow into a normal wild form tree. In addition, the process is labor intensive and time consuming. Only in five years you can wait for a full-fledged seedling. The advantage of this planting is the good adaptability of the tree to the conditions of the area.

If someone wants to plant a thuja in this way, the seeds are left under the cover of snow for the entire winter period so that they germinate faster. With the onset of spring, they must be placed in soil containinglots of nutrients. Sprouts germinate quickly, but young shoots need long-term care. Only four years later, on the fifth, they are transplanted to the place where they will grow constantly.

Planting cuttings

This method is the most common, as you can quickly wait for the result and grow a tree of any variety. For planting Western thuja cuttings, you need to take shoots from two-year-old or three-year-old plants. Planting material should be harvested in spring days: in the morning, in the evening, or wait for cloudy weather. Side shoots (their tops) of the current year are suitable for cuttings. They should be 10-12 cm long.

planting thuja western

Cuttings should be soaked in potassium permanganate for a day, then planted in fertile soil, which includes leafy soil, sand, humus. Deep landing is not welcome, five centimeters is enough. When planting, the cuttings are placed at an angle of 20-30 оС. A distance of 10-15 cm is maintained between them and covered with a film on top.

Instances planted in a container are sent for storage in the basement. When the weather settles and it becomes warm outside, they begin to be transplanted into the garden. A lump of earth on the roots does not need to be shaken. Cuttings planted in the spring take root quickly during the first year and begin to grow. If this is done in the summer, in the first year after planting, only callus appears in the cuttings, and rooting itself is carried out only in the second year.

Planting seedlings

This method is the most reliable, although expensive, since seedlingsneed to buy. The main thing here is to make the right choice of planting material. The purchase must be made from a trusted seller or in nurseries that are specially engaged in growing thuja seedlings of different varieties. Young trees are sold with pots.

When planting them, the hole should be larger than the pot. Needles, humus, earth of the upper layer of the garden are poured into it, 10 liters of water are poured (one bucket). Then you need to remove the seedling from the pot and place it in the hole. Next, straighten the roots, cover with earth and water again. Newly planted young plants do not need to be fed. This, on the contrary, will interfere with their adaptation to the place of new growth.

When the seedlings grow up a little, caring for them consists in timely watering, loosening and weeding the soil in tree trunks, feeding with nitrophoska. All these procedures are performed as needed. But if it is a hot summer, you need to water the tree more often, preventing the soil from drying out. This is done in the evening or early in the morning before the sun has risen. If watering is not carried out in the heat, the thuja begins to bear fruit. This is bad, because in the future the crown may be deformed. When the snow melts, you can start top dressing.

thuja western planting and care

How to choose a place to land?

When planning to start growing thuja, many questions arise. One of them is the choice of the right landing site, since the he alth and beauty of the ornamental tree depends on it. Western thuja is considered an unpretentious plant. But for good survival and getting a treeor a shrub that will have a lush crown and needles of a normal color, the planting site should be chosen carefully.

Sunny and shady place is suitable for this. But in the sun, the needles often get burned, and in the shade its color is not so saturated. The best option is partial shade, but with good protection from strong gusts of wind. Tui grow well on soddy soil, which includes leafy earth, sand, peat. Swampy, clay or peaty soil is suitable.

Fitting technology

For the cultivation of Western thuja of any variety, open ground and containers are used. Spring is considered the best time to plant. But it can also be done in autumn.

  • First of all, the distance between future trees or shrubs is taken into account. When planting several seedlings, it is one or two meters.
  • Planting pits one meter deep are being dug in the selected area. If the roots are too big, more can be done.
  • Then a mixture is prepared, which includes different soils: soddy, leafy, peat, sandy. 100 g of mineral fertilizer is applied to each pit.
  • If stagnant water is observed on the site, drainage is placed in the planting pits: pebbles, broken bricks.
  • The seedling is placed in the hole and covered with soil. It is important to place the root collar on the same level with the ground.
  • After planting the Western arborvitae and care is easy. The young plant is watered abundantly, the soil around the trunk is compacted and mulched.
thuja occidentalis occidentalis

Proper care

Thuja of the described species, although it is considered an unpretentious plant, but to get a he althy tree with high decorative properties, you need to follow some recommendations:

  • During the first month of life, a young plant needs watering. This should be done once every seven days.
  • Sprinkling should be done. During this procedure, dust is washed off, the smell of pine needles will be felt more clearly.
  • After each watering, you need to loosen the soil.
  • If the old mulch has been washed away by rain or has decomposed, you need to add new mulch, such as tree bark.
  • So that the needles do not get burned, they cover it with burlap.
  • Before the onset of the winter period, the branches must be tied with a rope, otherwise the snowfalls will break them.
  • Young shoots should be fed with organic or mineral fertilizers.
  • With the onset of spring, they get rid of dry, damaged and diseased shoots.

What is pruning for and what are the rules for it

In order for the thuja to grow he althy, well-groomed, beautiful, it needs to be cut. During this procedure, a crown is formed. Pruning should be done when the plant reaches two or three years of age. It is better to do this in the summer after the formation of buds and branches. The procedure is carried out using secateurs. So there will be no dents on the branches, and the cuts will heal faster.

The formation of the crown is started when it grows to the desired size. For this, 1/3 of the shoots are cut off. If you remove more, the tree will weaken, and it will take a long time to restore strength.Subsequently, corrective pruning is done to maintain the shape of the crown.

Popular topic