Western Red Cedar
Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata) How to Plant Cedar Bushes Cedar bushes make ideal hedge plants. They grow quickly and thickly if given a spot with full sun and moist soil. Once established on your property, they will grow healthily and happily with very little supplemental care from you. But do not plant your cedar bushes near sidewalks, driveways or roads that receive salt treatments in the winter. The salt will leach into the soil and eventually kill or permanently damage your cedar bushes. Instructions 1. Run a length of string along the planting line; the straight line that will mark the center and length of your planting hedge. Be sure that the line is at least 5 feet away from the pavement, road or the edge of your neighbour's property. Make sure that the line is straight. Then stake each end of the planting line. 2. Measure the planting line. In a hedge, cedar bushes may be planted 12 to 18 inches apart. Divide the length of the planting line by the appropriate number to determine how many cedar hedges  you must purchase. 3. Dig a trench centered along your planting line. Make it 1.5 feet wide and as deep as the containers your cedar bushes are currently in. 4. Fill the trench with water and allow it to drain 5. Divide the excavated soil in half. Mix one half with an equal amount of aged compost. Discard or compost the other half of the soil. 6. Remove the cedar bushes from their current containers and place them in the trench so that the edge of the root ball of one cedar is touching its neighbor. 7. Fill in the planting trench with the amended soil. Firm the soil around the bushes' roots to secure them. 8. Fertilize the soil with a "plant starter" (10-52-10) liquid fertilizer. Follow the package instructions for application methods and amounts. 9. Lay a running hose between two cedars and allow it to run until the soil in that area is quite moist. Then move the hose down the row until the entire row is soaked. When to prune Western Red Ceder Ask a dozen different people about the best time to prune a cedar hedge and you may get more than a few contradictory opinions. That may be because people are looking at things from differing points of view, rather than an uncertainty as to "when" such pruning should actually take place. Perhaps the better question to ask would be when to prune a cedar hedge to achieve a particular outcome. Instructions 1. Trim cedar hedges in early spring if the effect desired is to make them fuller. Pruning the sides of the hedge all the way around encourages growth outward. However, be cautious, remove only a minimal amount, without destroying any of the top's new bud growth 2. Prune the hedge in late spring if the idea is to reduce the height of the bush. Trim several inches, as desired, but no more than about one-quarter of the entire hedge's growth. Use sharp hedge shears that make clean cuts,without ripping or tearing at the branches. 3. Prune cedar hedges thoroughly around the middle of summer if the idea is to encourage healthy growth overall. Prune from the top down and around, making certain not to cut away any of the  important older wood located in the centre of the bush. 4. Shape the hedge in early autumn only if necessary, but be careful not to prune the bush too deeply.  Open or sparse areas left inside the hedge can open it up to problems if the winter is particularly brutal and cold. Delicate branches that haven't had enough time to strengthen and grow may crack, resulting in serious damage inside of the bush. Additionally, insects and small animals may see this as an opportunity to use the bush as a home, making it hard for the hedge to generate new growth the following spring.  
(Thuja plicata)
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