In its native Japan, this tree reaches 100–120 ft. tall, but in Western gardens it is not likely to exceed 25–40 ft. tall and 25–30 ft. wide. Very slow grower. In youth, it is symmetrical, dense, and rather narrow; with age, it is more open, and its limbs tend to droop. Small, scalelike leaves are scattered along branches and bunched at branch ends. Glossy dark green needles grow in whorls of 20 to 30 at branch and twig ends, radiating out like the spokes o fan umbrella; they are flattened, firm, fleshy, 3–6 in. long. Woody, 3–5-in. cones may appear on older trees.
Choice decorative tree for open ground or containers. Plant in rich, well-drained, neutral or slightly acid soil. Watch for mites in hot, dry weather. Leave unpruned; or thin to create Oriental effect. Good for bonsai.
From western Europe. Though it has lent its name to a large and important plant family, the genus ...
‘William Hertrich’ has very large, semidouble, deep red flowers with heavy petals.
‘Mandalay Queen’ has very large semidouble pink flowers with fluted petals.