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Lawn & Garden

Japanese plum yew, Cephalotaxus harringtonia

Common Name: Japanese plum yew

Type: shrub

Family: Taxaceae

Zone: 6 to 9     Find Your Zone

Height: 5 to 10 feet

Width: 5 to 10 feet

Sun exposure: full sun to full shade

Soil: moist, well drained, sandy

Leaves: evergreen

Fertilizer: Vigoro Tree, Shrub and Evergreen  

Pruning: Prune Plum Yew plants in late winter around February just before new growth is set to flush out.

This plant is not only adaptable with its soils, but it can tolerate full sun and full shade. Although this plant is a slow grower, it makes a great hedge or a good privacy screen. Its unique texture makes it a must in any landscape. This plants ability to survive makes it a rock star in the yard. In warmer southern climates, plant in shadier areas. In climates with cooler summers, plant in the sun.

If this plant is too tall for you, there is Cephalotaxus harringtonia ‘Prostrata’, which is a shorter version that looks great in mass plantings.


STEP 1: Digging the hole

  • Find a location that has suitable sun exposure for your particular type of plant.
  • Dig your hole an inch or two shallower than the rootball of the plant.
  • Dig the hole twice the diameter of the rootball.
  • Scuff up the sides of the hole with a shovel to help roots break through the native soil.

STEP 2: Putting plant in hole

  • When removing the plant from the pot, check to see if the roots were circling the pot.
  • If the plant is rootbound, gently break up the roots with your hands until loosened up.
  • Set plant level, in the center of the hole.
  • Make sure the top of the rootball is just above soil level.

STEP 3: Amending the soil and filling in the hole

  • Amend the soil with proper amendments for your soil type. 
  • Incorporate 50% native soil with 50% amendment soils like garden soil, composted manure or soil conditioner.
  • Make sure dirt clods are broken up or removed from hole along with rocks.
  • Fill the hole with soils to the soil level and pack down. Do not cover top of rootball with dirt.
  • Water in thoroughly to remove air pockets.

STEP 4: Mulching and fertilizing

  • Cover the planting site with at least 2 inches of the mulch of your choice (pinestraw, cupress mulch,etc.)
  • High Phosphorus root stimulator fertilizers like Quick Start from Miracle Gro are great to use at time of planting.

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Posted 2015-08-16T16:20:37+0000  by Ingar_HD_ATL Ingar_HD_ATL