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Similar but less problematic plants:
Cephalotaxus harringtonia Cephalotaxus harringtonia 'Fastigiata' bark
Podocarpus macrophyllus is often confused with:
Araucaria heterophylla Araucaria heterophylla
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Tsuga canadensis Tsuga canadensis
Garrya elliptica Garrya elliptica
Juniperus virginiana Juniperus virginiana

Shrubby Podocarpus macrophyllus

Phonetic Spelling
poh-doh-KAR-pus mak-roh-FY-lus
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

This is a densely compact evergreen conifer shrub or narrow, conical tree that grows well in coastal NC and grows up to 6.5' tall, although the tree form of this plant can grow up to 50'. In colder regions, it can be used as a container plant to be brought in from the outdoors during the winter months.  It adapts well to shearing so that it is sometimes used in topiary design. Its tolerance for low light allows for good growth in brightly lit rooms as a houseplant.  You may see this plant in commercial buildings such as offices or shopping malls, growing under skylights.  Where it is winter hardy, it can be grown as a large hedge or screen.  The foliage is pleasantly fragrant when crushed.  This plant can also be grown as an specimen and background plant. 

Prefers rich, slightly acidic, moist, well-drained, fertile soils in full sun to part shade.  The plant is tolerant of shade but intolerant of wet soils.  This plant likes medium relative humidity and has a slow growth rate. This plant is salt tolerant and displays some tolerance to heat. Although it is non-flowering, the pollen cones are yellowish and elongated, the seeds are light blue and fleshy, and the stalk enlarged and red.  While these fleshy red arils are edible, children may be tempted to eat the round seeds which resemble fruits and are poisonous. This plant has no serious pest or disease problems.

Indoor plants may develop scale. Chlorosis (yellowing of the leaves) occurs in alkaline soils.

Quick ID Hints:

  • Densely compact shrub with alternate, spiral, linear leaves
  • Midrib of flattened leaves raised on both sides
  • Evergreen gymnosperm

 

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#small tree#houseplant#container plant#wildlife plant#conifer#shade tolerant#fragrant leaves#low maintenance#winter interest#topiary#hedges#cpp#deer resistant#screening#fantz#bird friendly
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#small tree#houseplant#container plant#wildlife plant#conifer#shade tolerant#fragrant leaves#low maintenance#winter interest#topiary#hedges#cpp#deer resistant#screening#fantz#bird friendly
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Podocarpus
    Species:
    macrophyllus
    Family:
    Podocarpaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Southern China to Northern Myanmar, Taiwan, Japan
    Wildlife Value:
    Birds are attracted to the fruit
    Edibility:
    Fruits may be eaten out of hand or added to pies, cakes, and jellies.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 15 ft. 0 in. - 50 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 6 ft. 0 in. - 8 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Edible
    Poisonous
    Shrub
    Tree
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Columnar
    Pyramidal
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Fine
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Dappled Sunlight (Shade through upper canopy all day)
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    6-feet-12 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Good Cut
    Fruit Length:
    1-3 inches
    Fruit Description:
    Female cones have 1-2 seeds borne on top of a swollen, fleshy aril. The aril is purplish and less than an inch in diameter. Male cones are clustered in yellowish-green strobili. Aril's are edible but seeds are poisonous.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Flower Description:
    Non-flowering; pollen cones yellowish and elongated
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Leathery
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Linear
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are alternate, simple, congested and spirally arranged, broad linear-lanceolate, flattened, bluntly acute, yew-like, leathery, narrow, dark green in color and with a lighter midrib that is distinct on both surfaces. Leaves are arranged in dense spirals. They are fragrant when bruised.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Houseplants
    Patio
    Walkways
    Landscape Theme:
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Border
    Foundation Planting
    Hedge
    Screen/Privacy
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Heat
    Salt
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    CAUSES ONLY LOW TOXICITY IF EATEN. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea.
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Unidentified
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Seeds