Chamaecyparis pisifera 'Boulevard', the silvery blue needles of Boulevard sawara-cypress makes it a valuable addition to the garden for accent or as a specimen plant
Intermediate-Sized Evergreens for the Home Landscape
- Generally grow 6-20 feet tall
- Include cone-bearing plants with year-round needle-like foliage
- Recommended for the Midwest on the basis of ornamental value, proven hardiness, availability, and freedom from serious problems
Uses in the Landscape
- Create privacy around a deck, patio, or entryway
- Screen unwanted views
- Help create seasonal interest in winter months
- Soften structural edges around foundations, under windows, at corners, or against walls
- Provide a focal point in the landscape
- Create structure and depth in mixed plantings
- Provide a backdrop against which other plants can be highlighted
Factors to Consider
Although we think of evergreens as green, they actually come in several other colors, including silver-blue, blue-green, and yellow-green. Be sure to think about how the foliage color will work with buildings and other plantings in the area.
Pines tend to have an open, airy texture, while yews have a more dense habit. The flat, glossy leaves of many hollies make a different impact than the lacy foliage of arborvitae.
Evergreen shrubs have a variety of shapes: columnar, pyramidal, round, vase, weeping, upright. Be sure to select a variety that naturally grows in the shape you desire so pruning is minimal and less maintenance is required.
Recommended Intermediate-Sized Evergreens (6-20 feet tall)
Key to Growth Rate: Height and spread are listed at the tree's maturity. How fast a tree grows will be Influenced by site conditions, species selection, and maintenance. By some ratings, any evergreen that at maturity is not as tall as its parent species is considered a dwarf, such as a plant that grows only 40 feet tall compared to a parent species that reaches 80 feet To clear up the confusion, the American Conifer Society has attempted to standardize the terminology and rate of growth as follows.:
Large conifer-grows 12 inches or more per year (size at age 10 to 15 years is greater than 15 feet)
Intermediate conifer-grows 6-12 inches per year (size at age 10 to 15 years is 6 to 15 feet)
Dwarf conifer-grows 3 to 6 inches per year (size at age 10 to 15 years is 3 inches per year (size at age 10 to 15 years is 2 to 3 feet)
Miniature conifer-grows less than 3 inches per year (size at age 10 to 15 years is 2 to 3 feet)
If your site is limited by overhangs, proximity to walks, driveways, patios, buildings, or surrounding plantings, keep in mind the ultimate height and width of the plant you're selecting A two-foot tall yew may be just right in front of your living room windows today, but if its mature height is eight feet, you'll be pruning it annually to keep it from blocking your view
The chart inside provides information about the size and other important characteristics of tall and medium evergreens recommended by The Morton Arboretum for their suitability and desirability in the Midwest.
|The fleshy red fruits of Taxus Cuspidata, Japanese yew|
- Browns Anglo-Japanese Yew 33%
Botanical Name: Taxus x media 'Brownii'Common Name: Browns Anglo-Japanese Yew Updated 1/2013 Click on an image to enlarge upper surface of needles lower surface of needles Caution: The leaves, bark and seeds of all yews are...
- Green-leaved Anglo-Japanese Yew 33%
Botanical Name: Taxus x media 'Viridis'Common Name: Green-leaved Anglo-Japanese Yew Updated 1/2013 Caution: The leaves, bark and seeds of all yews are poisonous.Height: 10-12' Spread: 1-2' Habit/Form: Narrow, columnar Growth Rate: Slow Zone:...
- Ward Anglo-Japanese Yew 33%
Botanical Name: Taxus x media 'Wardii'Common Name: Ward Anglo-Japanese Yew Updated 1/2013 Caution: The leaves, bark and seeds of all yews are poisonous.Height: 6-8' Spread: 15-20' Habit/Form: Wide spreading Growth Rate: Slow Zone: 3-7Cultural...
- Emerald Eastern Arborvitae 32%
Botanical Name: Thuja occidentalis 'Smaragd' Common Name: Emerald Eastern Arborvitae Updated 1/2013 Form Click to enlarge photo Height: 10-15' Spread: 3-4' Habit/Form: Narrow pyramidal Growth Rate: Slow Zone: 3-7Cultural...
- Dwarf Alberta Spruce 32%
Botanical Name: Picea glauca 'Conica' Common Name: Dwarf Alberta Spruce Updated 11/2012 Form Winter form Needles Height: 6-8' Spread: 4-5' Habit/Form: Conical, dense Growth Rate: Extremely slow Zone:...
- Anglo-Japanese Yew 32%
Botanical Name: Taxus x mediaCommon Name: Anglo-Japanese Yew Updated 1/2013 Caution: The leaves, bark and seeds of all yews are poisonous.Height: 15-20' Spread: 5-15' Habit/Form: Spreading Growth Rate: Slow Zone: 4-7Cultural Requirements: Best...