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Dwarf Evergreens

Pinus thun Oculus Draconis 400

Pinus thunbergii ‘Oculus Draconis’

Abies koreana    Native to the mountains of southern Korea, this garden friendly conifer will grow slowly to 20-30' with a pyramidal habit with branches held in a distinctly horizontal plane. This species is particularly admired for its attractively colored needles which are dark green on top and conspicuously silvered on the undersides, and, for its plump, dark purple to blue cones which begin appearing on very young plants, even on plants under 3' tall. Best placement is in full sun, in moist, well drained but never soggy soil. Plants are quite heat tolerant but do not like wet feet. Zone 5.

Abies koreana ‘Siberlocke’     This handsome selection of the Korean Fir has needles that curl up to reveal undersides of startling silvery-white. Form is upright, densely conical, sometimes attractively irregular. Slow growing, possibly reaching 30’ after many years. Maintains a dense, full habit throughout its life. Abundant, rich purple cones in spring add yet another ornamental feature to this amazing evergreen. Zone 5.

Abies pinsapo ‘Glauca’ Spanish Fir     A large, tree with a distinctive, architectural form, slow growing, after many years reaching heights of 50’-70’. Short, stout, blue/green needles tightly encircle the stems, and branchlets often spiral in capricious patterns at the ends of the branches. Needles appear sharp but are soft to the touch. Over-all form in broad, conical. Prefers a sunny location with moist, well-drained soil. Becomes quite drought tolerant with age. Tolerant of high pH soils. Very distinctive. Received the Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit in 1993. Zone 6. 

Chamaecyparis (Falsecypress) 

    obtusa ‘Blue Feathers’    A slow growing, compact, globe-shaped plant with an abundance of juvenile foliage giving it a feathery, fine textured appearance enhanced by strong blue foliage hues. 4ft. Zone 5.

    obtusa ‘Confucius’ New    Bright golden-yellow foliage shimmers at the ends of the branches against dark, emerald-green, interior foliage, creating a pleasing two-toned effect. Habit is upright, narrow, growing moderately fast to reach 12’-15’ high by 6’-8’ wide in 10-15 years. Effective as a specimen, creating strong accent anywhere in the landscape, also adds excitement to shrub borders. For rich, evenly moist, well-drained soil.

    obtusa ‘Crippsii’    An upright, pyramidal, large shrub to small tree with graceful horizontal branches lined with fan-like fronds, brilliantly yellow at their tips, becoming gold then bright chartreuse toward the core of the plant. Grows slowly, eventually becoming broadly conical, 15ft. high by 8ft. wide with wide-spreading branches that droop flirtatiously at their tips. Impressive as a lawn specimen or for dramatic accent in the shrub border. Zone5.

    obtusa ‘Gracilis’ - Select        This "select" form of the Hinoki Falsecyparis exhibits a fuller shape, greener color and a slower growth rate as compared to 'Gracilis'. Moderately fast growing with10 year old plants being 5' high and mature specimens, after many years, reaching 30'. Form is generally pyramidal with rich, green, fan-like foliage sprays growing in various vertical and horizontal planes displaying what many consider to be the real Japanese effect. Zone 5.

    obtusa ‘Kosteri’    A robust, broad/upright form with bright green, interestingly contorted foliage that gives it a unique look and sets it apart from all other dwarf conifers. Very slow growing to a mature height of 4-5' in many years. Said to benefit from reasonably consistent moisture and a position out of winter wind.

    obtusa ‘Nana’   Very slow growing to about 3ft. in height with a slightly broader spread. A true dwarf, not to be confused with the faster and taller growing 'Nana Gracilis'. Suitable for rock gardens, ornamental containers and troughs and as specimens.

    obtusa ‘Spiralis’      Displays a growth habit similar to 'Nana Gracilis but is much slower growing. In addition, 'Spiralis' differs from 'Nana Gracilis' in being noticeably upright and in having finer, more tightly held foliage. After many years, plants will mature at 3' tall and 2' wide.

    obtusa ‘Split Rock’    The bluest obtusa with both green adult foliage and blue juvenile foliage imparting lots of color and textural interest. Grows to 5-6' at a rate of 3-5" per year, developing a upright/broad form. Zone 5.

    obtusa ‘Templehof’     A faster growing selection, compact, broadly cone-shaped with dense, olive green, fan-shaped foliage and orange stems. Particularly useful when that unique "Chamaecyparis look" is desired but when there aren't decades to wait for the slower growing forms to mature. A handsome plant in any landscape whether used as a specimen/accent, as part of a foundation planting or as an element in a mixed shrub border, even as a focal point in the mixed perennial border.  Grow in sun, in rich, moist, well drained, neutral to acidic soils. Zone 4.

    pisifera ‘Cream Ball’   Small, very dense plants with grayish-green foliage tipped with a veneer of yellow-green that fades to nearly white on the edges. Its dense form, small size and eye-catching coloring offer a variety of landscape possibilities such as planting in small groups, combining with annuals and perennials both in the border and in containers. Grows 2-3ft. tall with an equal spread. Zone 4.

    pisifera ‘Soft Serve’    Compact and slow growing with a conical form and soft, fern-like foliage that's bright green on top and flecked with silver-blue on the underside. A sport of C. 'Boulevard', 'Soft Serve' retains some of the great texture of it's parent with none of the disease problems that can plague that selection. Grows 6-8' tall with a neat, conical form and soft, "touchable" foliage that requires little pruning. Recommended for hedging, for specimen planting and makes a good substitute for the Dwarf Alberta Spruce. Zone 5.

    pisifera ‘Tsukumo’ New   Very cute, tiny mounds with dense, finely textured foliage that grows a mere one inch per year.  Expect plants to reach 1’ in height with a wider spread in 10 years. A rock gardeners dream plant. Also perfect for troughs and as bonsai subjects.

Jun. communis 'Gold Cone'

Juniperus communis ‘Gold Cone’    Tight, dense and slow growing, this columnar Juniper is ideal for many landscape uses. Foliage is a superb gold color on plants that grow only 3-4ins. per year, maturing at 6-7ft. high by 2-3ft. wide. Thought to be the best of the yellow-needled columnar types. Retains its color through summer with a minimum of fading. Grow in full sun, in well drained soil. Zone 5.

    horizontalis ‘Mother Lode’     A unique sport of ‘Wiltoni’ that is completely bright yellow in summer without a speck of green turning deep gold and salmon-orange with green overtones in winter. Slow growing but not fragile, thoroughly capable of holding its own in any full sun location with excellent drainage. Warrants a prominent spot in the garden where it can be seen and enjoyed year round. Only 4-6ins. tall with slow, modest spread. Zone 3.

Juniperus procumbens 'Nana'

Juniperus procumbens ‘Nana’     This is the true selection of ‘Nana’ which in increments of 2-3” a year forms a low, ground-hugging mat looking somewhat like rough textured moss. A choice, dwarf conifer especially useful as a modest groundcover, in the rock garden, in collections of dwarf conifers, and for bonsai. Grow in full sun in well drained soil. Zone 4

Larix dicidua ‘Pendula’ See under Shrubs.

Larix dicidua ‘Pendula’-prostrate form  See under Shrubs.

Picea abies ‘Pendula’    Although slow growing when young, 'Pendula' will eventually develop into a large eye-catching specimen. All branches are pendulous and, unless staked, plants will simply maintain a prostrate, trailing form. Both the vertical and prostrate forms are attractive, choice of form being a matter of taste.

Picea glauca ‘Echiniformis’     Short gray-green needles tightly packed on low, mounding frames. Very slow growing, adding only 1-2" of new growth per year, eventually maturing at 15-20" high. Because of its slow growth and low, dense habit, ‘Echiniformis’ is very desirable for rock garden and container use. Zone 2.

Picea glauca ‘Ed Hirle’     A natural branch sport found on a Dwarf Alberta Spruce. Growth rate is less than half that of Picea glauca ‘Conica’, in fact, everything about the plant is scaled down, including the size of the needles which are approximately one half the size of those of a regular Alberta Spruce. 12 yr. old plants are barely 20ins. tall and only 12ins. across at the base. Estimates are that a 20 yr. old plant will be less than 3ft. high. Recommended for rock gardens, dwarf conifer collections and for planters. Zone 4.

Picea mariana ‘Ericoides’    (Dwarf Black Spruce)  Low and wide growing,(18ins. high by 30ins. wide), with tiny, densely packed blue-green needles. Somewhat similar to the Bird’s Nest Spruce but more dense and with deeper blue color. Very rugged plants that thrive in sun, in moist, acid soil. Zone 2.

Picea omorika ‘Nana’   A dense, compact, dwarf spruce with a neat, broad pyramidal form, wide at the base and tapering gradually to a point. Needles are short, very dark green and thickly packed on the branches. Mature height is 3ft. tall with a very appealing tight, symmetrical silhouette. Could be use in foundation plantings, certainly as a rock garden specimen, or, among perennials in the mixed border. Zone 4.

Picea omorika 'Pendula' (Weeping Serbian Spruce)    A small tree with strongly weeping, drooping, slightly twisted branches. Needles are blue/green. An especially beautiful small evergreen with a look that sets it apart from other weeping conifers. The specimen in the photo has been growing at our nursery for 14yrs. and is 12ft. high. In background is Hepticodium miconioides, Seven-son Flower. 

    orientalis ‘Aurea’ New   Very showy, bright, lemony-yellow, new growth glows at the branch tips in spring.  The yellow new growth contrasts brilliantly with the older, dark green needles and maintains the eye-catching show for six weeks before turning all green. Terrific for accent in larger spaces such as in the middle of open lawns and in large mixed shrub borders. Large enough to be appreciated from a distance. A graceful, large evergreen with magnetic appeal! Expect 15’ or more in ten years and twice that height by maturity.

    orientalis ‘Gaul Aurea’      A beautiful dwarf Spruce with a habit similar to 'Nana' though somewhat more open. Form is dense, upright, broad pyramidal with short, tightly packed needles that, on new growth, are golden yellow, gradually fading to green as summer progresses. Slow glowing, reaching 6-8' in 20 years. To get an idea of what this conifer looks like, check out the picture of 'Nana' below and imagine it with gold tipped branches.

Picea orientalis 'Nana'

orientalis ‘Nana’        A dense, compact, dwarf spruce with a neat, broad pyramidal form, wide at the base and tapering gradually to a point. Needles are short, very dark green and thickly packed on the branches. Mature height is 3ft. tall with a very appealing tight, symmetrical silhouette. Could be use in foundation plantings, certainly as a rock garden specimen, or, among perennials in the mixed border. Zone 4.

    pungens ‘Glauca Globosa’    (Dwarf Colorado Blue Sprure) Young plants have an irregular, flattened globe shape, gradually pulling themselves together into a compact, broad pyramid. Slow growing, at a rate of 3"-6" per year, after many years, reaching a height of 3'-4' Very similar to and often mistaken for Picea pungens 'Montgomery'. Both are nice and you can't go wrong with either. We've had what we feel is 'Glauca Globosa' in our border for going on 12 years and it's barely 3' tall by 4-5' wide. Zone 3.

    pungens ‘Glauca Pendula’    If unstaked, plants will at best form a weak, arching leader with most of the growth taking place at ground level, spreading horizontally over the ground in ground cover fashion. When staked, plants assume fanciful, unpredictable shapes with a whimsical, left-of-center, central leader with all other lateral branches draping and pendulous. When staked, plants may be maintained at any height though overall form is individual, varying from plant to plant, always fantastically sculptural. Needles have good blue color. Zone 2.

    pungens ‘Mrs. Cesarini’ New    A bright-green, flattened mound with dense branching that displays buds at the ends of the branches that are noticeably lighter green than the older needles, drawing a bright contrast between the two so that the emerging buds look like tiny lime-green lights flickering across the surface of the darker green mound. A flashy, cute, dwarf, only putting on several inches of growth per year. Zone 2.

Pinus bungeana Lacebark Pine    As a young tree, it has dark green needles and a densely branched pyramidal form. The bark on young trees is smooth and dull gray, but with age the bark starts scaling off in small patches in a pattern similar to that seen on plane trees. On mature trees, when these patches scale off, a chalky white sub-bark is exposed. Patience is called for, as it takes a number of years for plants to reach their most ornate stage.

    densiflora-thunbergii ‘Jane Kluis’     A dwarf pine with densely packed, stiff green needles that tightly circle the stems, pointing forward toward the end of the stem. Habit is rounded, flat-topped, often with sections of layered branches creating a layered effect. A true dwarf, reaching only 3’-6’ high in 12-15 years. Zone 5.

    mugo mughus ‘Rock Garden’    (Mugo Pine)  All mugos are not alike and many unsuspecting gardeners, thinking they were buying a dwarf, have watched in horror as their plants morphed into 30' green monsters. Admittedly, a 30' Mugo Pine is a beautiful sight, unless it has been wedged into a space meant to hold a 2' plant. 'Rock Garden' is vegetatively propagated from known dwarf stock, and will remain dwarf.  Zone 3.

    mugo ‘Slowmound’    This selection forms a dwarf, uniform carpet of upward-facing branches, 3ft. high at maturity. Needles are 2ins. long and interestingly twisted. Looks great in the rock garden, in mixed conifer plantings and even in foundation plantings. Zone 3.

    parviflora ‘Fuku-zu-mi’ New    Low growing and wide spreading with an evocative, windswept look with short, twisted, silver-blue needles. This is a plant with a mind of its own that will appeal especially to gardeners with a more abstract, wonderlust, landscape vision. Can be staked and trained as a tree. Can reach 12’-15’ in height after many years. Requires good drainage and is a good choice for shore planting as it is salt tolerant. Zone 4.

    parviflora ‘Gimborn’s Ideal’ New     10’ tall in ten years and up to 25’ high in many years with a habit that’s dense for a P. parviflora. Taller than wide with outstretched, ascending branches imparting a somewhat irregular, “jagged” silhouette. Appears more “groomed” than many other Japanese White Pines. Short, blue/green, twisted needles. Tolerant of seaside conditions,(salt), and needs reasonably moist but very well drained soil. Very desirable. Retains enough of the windswept look to stir the imagination.

    parviflora 'Glauca Nana' (Japanese White Pine)    A tight, irregular growing, semi-dwarf conifer with a good blue cast. Because of its upright habit, it makes a good campanion for the many rounded or flat-topped forms of dwarf conifers. A 10 year old plant will be less than 4' tall and approximately 2' wide.

    sylvestris ‘Aurensis’        A slow-growing, dense, medium sized Scots Pine with needles that are green/chartreuse in summer but transform to a showy, golden yellow in winter. Neither dwarf nor overly large, after many years reaching perhaps to 25’. The dense, compact and brightly colored needles displayed on an irregular growing, architecturally pleasing frame make this conifer highly desirable for accent and specimen use. Zone 2.

    thunbergii ‘Oculus Draconis’      Conforms to the specie description of Japanese Black Pine in being vigorous, with an informal, open habit and branches resembling chimney brushes with densely packed, rich green, 3-4" long needles that, in spring, encircle large, pointy, silvery-white buds. 'Oculus Draconis' goes the species one better by delivering needles that are prominently ringed in yellow/white bands. Shows high tolerance of heat, drought and salt making it an excellent choice for seaside planting. 20-40' tall. Hardy to the warmer parts of zone 5,(5b-6a). Considered choice and collectable.

    Pinus virginiana ‘Wate’s Golden’ New    Pinus virginiana is an indestructible, small, scrubby tree that has adapted to barren, sandy and dry places, even heavy clay, and, as a species, would hardly get a second look as an ornamental. ‘Wate’s Gold’ changes all that. Starting as early as October, its medium green needles begin turning to strong yellow/gold and hold their color through winter. Small, slow growing, after many years reaching 15 in height with an attractively irregular outline. The brightly colored needles stand out anywhere in the winter landscape but are especially effective when plants are backed by green-needled evergreens. Color is best in cold temperatures, making ‘Wate’s Gold’ a special treat for northern gardens. 

Pinus wallichiana (griffithii) 'Zebrina'

wallichiana (griffithii) ‘Zebrina’        Variegated Himalayan Pine. I'm really excited to offering this special pine this year. It's a large tree, 30-50' high, possibly higher, with a width equal to at least ,or more, the height. The needles are long and strikingly variegated with gold bands.  A tree of exceptional beauty earning high praise from Michael Dirr whose description includes such tributes as "graceful, of elegant habit,..a lovely specimen tree". In zone 5, needles may, or may not, burn during exceptionally cold winters. Probably best in zone 6 and warmer parts of zone 6. Rare and collectable.

Sciadopitys verticilata (Japanese Umbrella-pine)    An imposing, pyramidal conifer with long, polished, dark green needles, very distinctive, occurring in whorles at intervals along the stems. Branches are held horizontally and, just as the needles encircle the stems, so also the branches occur in whorls at regular intervals along the trunk.  Height is anywhere from 30'-60', in time possibly more. Requires rich, moist, acidic soil and sun and, wherever possible, protection form wind. A very desirable tree whose distinctive whorled patterns and lush foliage impart an exotic, almost tropical appearance. Zone 5.

Sciadopitys verticilata ‘Cynthia Waxman’ New    Introduced by the renowned UConn plantsman, Sidney Waxman, this slower growing, (6” per year), Japanese Umbrella Pine has a loose, open habit when young but with age becomes much more dense, with a tight, pyramidal silhouette. Needles are lustrous, thick textured and deep green. Hard to find much info on this new tree and, it’s thanks to the research efforts of nursery employee Dan Zima that we’re able to provide the above description. To get a sense of the mature habit of ‘Cynthia Waxman’, Dan suggests visualizing a glamorous-movie-star version of a large, Dwarf Alberta Spruce!

Sciadopitys verticillata

Sciadopitys verticilata ‘Wintergreen’ (Japanese umbrella-pine)    Long, dense, glossy needles on plants with a narrow conical form, distinctly more narrow than the species. Needles do not yellow in winter. A very imposing specimen and accent plant. 30-50’ tall. Slow growing at a rate of 9” a year. This selection of the umbrella-pine does well in colder climates. Locally, there are beautiful specimens to be seen on the campuses of Amherst and Smith college. Zone 5.

 Taxodium distichum; find under shrubs

Taxus cuspidata ‘Aurea Low Boy’ New     Golden/yellow needles on low, ground-hugging plants, 2’ high, up to 3’ high, by 4’ wide. Most effective in part shade where its golden foliage ignites a patch of bright, unexpected color. For specimen and groundcover use. Easy to grow and just about indestructible. Hardy throughout zone 5.

Taxus x media ‘Hillii’     A narrow, upright growing yew, growing slowly, at a rate of 6”-7” per year, to a mature height of 6’-8’, possibly up to 12’-15’ after many years. Habit is dense, columnar, very uniform, maintaining a width that’s one half the height, or less. Unlike many other yew varieties that lose needles on the lower branches, ‘Hillii’ holds its evergreen needles to the ground, making it especially good for hedging. Also excellent for vertical accent anywhere in the landscape, foundation and specimen planting. For sun to part shade, even deeper shade. Zone 4.

Taxus media 'Veridis

Taxus x media ‘Viridis’    The specimen in picture at left is growing at Bay State and is the object of much attention throughout the season. It’s slow-growing, tight, upright form, 10-12ft. high by only 1-2ft. wide, is one of the main features of our borders. It gains in appeal and, after fifteen years of enjoying it in the garden, I like it more each year. Foliage is lighter green than the species and new growth is quite yellow. A fantastic accent plant with few pest or disease problems. Zone 4.

Thuja occidentalis ‘Fire Chief’     A compact, slow growing Arborvitae that boast glowing red color in spring. 3-5' tall and 3-4' wide after 10 years with a broad, conical shape. In spring, brilliant red foliage appears among the older dark green leaves. As the season progresses, color retreats somewhat but outer tips retain their outstanding red color right through summer. Its small size makes it well suited for foundation planting, for low hedging, for accent/specimen use and for use among perennials to add an evergreen element. Easy in sun to light shade with average but evenly moist, well-drained soil. Zone 3.

Thuja occidentalis ‘Green Midget’ New    A dwarf Arborvitae with a tight globe shape, slow growing, after many years reaching 5’ high by 5’ wide. An attractive, truly carefree, dwarf evergreen for specimen use, rock gardens and low hedges Zone 3.

Thuja occidentalis ‘Piccolo’ New  A very slow growing, dwarf Arborvitae with an upright, compact, pyramidal habit, over many years reaching 8’ tall by 3’ wide. Plants with tight, columnar forms are invaluable for accent throughout the landscape, and that’s especially true of smaller forms such as ‘Piccolo’. For vertical accent as specimens, for small hedges, as part of mixed shrub borders, rock gardens and even as anchor plants in mixed perennial borders. Zone 3. 

Thuja occidentalis ‘Wansdyke Silver’ New    A medium sized arborvitae with soft, graceful foliage splashed with creamy white, 6-8' tall by 3-4' wide. Excellent for adding a touch of excitement to shrub borders, to mixed evergreen hedges and as anchor plants in the perennial border, and as bold focal points throughout the landscape. The foliage texture is softer, less dense than most arborvitae. Add to this the liberal white flecking and the landscape-friendly size, and the result is a special, attractive and versitile evergreen with great garden appeal. Zone 4.

Thuja plicata ‘Daniellow’     Beautiful golden yellow foliage with rich orange overtones. Golden color holds very well through the winter with little, if any, color change at all - making it a real standout in just about any area.  Habit is densely conical, 15’-18’ tall by 4’-5’ wide at maturity, becoming more & more columnar in habit with age. Growth rate is moderate at 6”-10” per year. Has a wide variety of uses, from a medium sized specimen planting, to hedge plantings, bright accents, even container gardening. Makes a nice screen / border if you are after something with lots of year round color. Has shown itself to be very deer resistant. Zone 5.


Location of the Nursery:
Bay State Perennial Farm
36 State Road (Routes 5 & 10)
Whately, MA 01093
(413) 665-3525


Mailing Address:
Bay State Perennial Farm
P.O.Box 706
N. Hatfield, MA 01066


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