Emerald Cedar- Thuja

(Question)

Hello, We purchase 14 emerald cedar last year and planted them. They are in good shape and growing well. The only thing that I really don’t like is that this year most of them started to have lots of small brown things like small buttons (their seed) all over the tree and it really look bad. I like them when they are all green. My question is if it’s just for a short period of time or they always have these seeds? or we bought the wrong cedar?

(Answer)

Thank you for your inquiry. Without a close up photo of the shrub in question it is difficult to correctly identify  the type of cedar that you purchased. “Emerald cedar” or “White cedar” (Thuja occidentalis ‘Smaragd) is a common name for a very popular member of the Thuja genus. Thuja  is a genus of coniferous trees in the Cupressaceae (cypress family). And like all conifers this evergreen produces cones every year. The male cones are small, inconspicuous, and are located at the tips of the twigs. The female cones start out similarly inconspicuous, but grow to about 1–2 cm long at maturity when 6–8 months old. Emerald cedar is frequently used as a  hedging shrub in North America. This evergreen is  slow-growing and generally matures to a height of 15 feet or less and 3-5 feet wide. When planted in rows, emerald cedars provide a sturdy privacy screen while remaining easy to prune to desired height.

The following wesites provide information on prunning of cedars:  https://www.mortonarb.org/tree-plant-advice/article/708/pruning-evergreens.html as well as their diseases :

https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/farming-natural-resources-and-industry/agriculture-and-seafood/animal-and-crops/plant-health/dying-cedar-hedges.pdf

Hope this helped