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This plant may not thrive in your area
Canadian Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) has style. This beautifully fine-textured tree has lacy foliage that adds a graceful touch to an otherwise stark landscape. As an evergreen conifer, it does produce cones, but they are some of the smallest of all conifers '– only one-half inch to one inch long. You may think that a tree with such a delicate-looking appearance, with its feathery needles and dainty cones, implies weakness. But its branches are remarkably resilient and resistant to breaking. If you want a stately evergreen tree with lots of character, Canadian Hemlock delivers! A Cut Above Other Conifers Other than its beautiful appearance, Canadian Hemlock has a host of other benefits, which are uncharacteristic of many evergreens, such as: • It's a shade-tolerant conifer. Most evergreen trees need full sun to thrive, but Canadian Hemlock is unusually tolerant of shade. In fact, in the warmer regions of its hardiness range, it actually prefers shady sites! • It can be sheared to form a sturdy evergreen hedge. Many other evergreen trees are useful as hedges, but they don't respond well over time to repeated shearings. Canadian Hemlock is not only easily shaped into a hedge, but it responds to heavy pruning in spring by producing thick, full foliage that grows to the ground. This makes it a hard-to-beat evergreen privacy hedge. • It's a tenaciously cold-tolerant tree. With an expansive perennial range, Canadian Hemlock prospers in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 3 through 7, which means it withstands winter temperatures to -30 degrees F! 3 Planting Tips 1. Canadian Hemlock needs loose, moist, well-drained soil for optimal health and growth. It also prefers soil that's slightly acidic. 2. Be sure not to bury the tree too deeply; plant it slightly elevated above grade. 3. All trees don't need staking when you first plant them, but Canadian Hemlock performs best if you plant it in an area protected from strong winds and stake it during the first two years after transplanting. Focal Points and Living Fences A single Canadian Hemlock tree, strategically placed in the landscape, is a stunning specimen plant. This focal point is even grander when trees are staggered in threes as a triangular grouping. Plant it where it has room to grow, because its mature height reaches up to 70 feet. This height, coupled with its evergreen nature, offers homeowners an option to building a privacy fence '– planting a living fence that legally exceeds restricted heights of conventional fencing!