The Q&A Archives: Growth Rate Of Podocarpus

Question: We would like to know the growth rate of a Podocarpus gracilior and a Podocarpus macrophyllus. We plan on buying a five gallon tree from a local nursery because we haven't been able to find a larger one. The layout of our garden plan will depend on the growth rate of the trees.


Podocarpus gracilior, or fern pine, can reach 60' in old age, but grows very slowly (less than 6" per year). In fact they are often sold as basket or dish plants, and many are espaliered. So, to keep your plant small, prune periodically while it's young.Podocarpus macrophyllus, or yew pine, has the potential to reach 50' in height, but is often pruned into a shrub shape, and makes a good tub plant.

If ultimate size is a concern, you should be safe with either plant, if you prune and train while they're young.

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