81205Some of us may remember deodar cedar, Cedrus deodara, from the opening scene of the Andy Griffith Show. They were in the background as Andy Taylor and his son Opie skipped stones on Myers Lake near Mayberry in North Carolina. Those well established and naturalized trees and the pond are actually in Franklin Canyon Park in the Santa Monica Mountains above Beverly Hills.

If only it did not get big enough to shade most of a compact home garden, deodar cedar would be better than most other evergreen coniferous trees used in California landscapes. It enjoys the warmth and sunshine here, and does not require any more water than what most regions that are not desert get from rain. It eventually gets fifty feet tall and thirty feet wide, and might get bigger.

The glaucous grayish needle leaves are about an inch or two long, and are arranged either in tight terminal clusters on the tips of short and stout stems, or singly on longer and pendulous shoots. Ideally, trees develop conical canopies with horizontal limbs that droop at the tips. Some trees develop a few main trunks down low, or big structurally deficient limbs that curve irregularly upward.

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9 thoughts on “Deodar Cedar

  1. Thanks, I’d not known of this tree and it is a magnificent species especially when growing in the native range, in India for instance. It appears that certain cultivars would tolerate the cold here. I’ll have to check local nurseries just for interest.

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    1. Some of the cultivars might be more sensitive to cold and damp weather. A cultivar with golden foliage does better in Southern California than it does here, although it looks yellow and sickly to me.

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    1. It is a remarkably useful timber. In my brief gardening column, I must fit everything I want to say about it into just three short paragraphs, so can not include much of the interesting trivia about the subjects.

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