Plant ID forum: Help identify this plant?

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Houston/Galveston Tx.
MistyWind
Jun 17, 2017 1:41 PM CST
Hi, please help me identify the pictured tree/shrub. We recently purchased the home, and the landscaping is pre-existing. I want to cut these down to about 4.5 ft tall, however I do not want to kill or put the plant into shock. It is covering our house number making it not visible from the street and I would also like to add a flag at the front of the home. The current trunk is about 4" in diameter. Thanks in advance for any help provided.
Thumb of 2017-06-17/MistyWind/66e59e
Thumb of 2017-06-17/MistyWind/5b3d94
Thumb of 2017-06-17/MistyWind/03359d

Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
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porkpal
Jun 17, 2017 1:47 PM CST
I think it is Japanese Yew, but I don't know how much trimming it will tolerate.
Porkpal
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Jun 17, 2017 1:49 PM CST
Welcome!

I believe they are Yews (Taxus). They take very well to pruning.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

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plantladylin
Jun 17, 2017 1:50 PM CST
It reminds me of Buddhist Pine (Podocarpus macrophyllus)

People prune them into all sorts of shapes: https://www.google.com/search?...
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Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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crawgarden
Jun 17, 2017 1:52 PM CST
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Name: Scott
Tampa FL (Westchase)
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ScotTi
Jun 17, 2017 2:39 PM CST
plantladylin said:It reminds me of Buddhist Pine (Podocarpus macrophyllus)

People prune them into all sorts of shapes: https://www.google.com/search?...


I agree
I topped both of my Podocarpus when I purchased my home years ago and both survived and look great maintained for my purpose at 8' to this day
I like the look that they are now for your entryway. Maybe a pain to keep them maintained at that height yourself, as I have to trim mine about every four weeks standing on a step ladder.
[Last edited by ScotTi - Jun 17, 2017 5:19 PM (+)]
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
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DaisyI
Jun 17, 2017 3:25 PM CST
Yes, Podocarpus. That's what I was thinking. Taxus is the native California Yew. Sighing!
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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Name: John
Scott County, KY (Zone 5b)
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ViburnumValley
Jun 18, 2017 8:52 AM CST
Hi MistyWind:

Those plants can probably be reduced to the scale you stated, but to do it all at once would be contrary to your stated objective to not shock the plant. You could gradually reduce the plant's size over a period of growing seasons to overcome that potentiality. But you may not wish to invest that much time to achieve the stated goal.

You may be wiser to follow a prescription like this:

** remove the oversized (from your perspective) existing plants

** do all the construction and installation in that area of other things you desire (flag, etc.)

** then re-plant with that species or something else) at or near the size you would prefer

** maintain the new planting at the dimensions that suit you

What you may find along the way...

You discover other things you might like at your front door instead of a large evergreen. You won't risk damaging/killing the plant you intended to preserve, and spend a lot of effort for nothing - and have to look at it suffering daily.

There is no shame or peril in editing a landscape.
John

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