Different Types of Podocarpus Trees: Yews, Evergreen Needles, and Berries

Podocarpus Trees

Do you like evergreen trees? If so, you will love the Podocarpus genus! This family of plants comes in many different shapes and sizes, but they are all characterized by their signature evergreen needles.

In addition to their beauty, these trees are also known for being low maintenance.

Another great feature of the Podocarpus genus is that some varieties produce fleshy seeds that turn into berries.

These berries attract a variety of bird species, making them a popular choice for gardeners and nature lovers alike!

Common Name Podocarpus yew pine, Buddhist pine, fern pine, plum pine, yew pine, Japanese yew
Botanical Name Podocarpus
Family Podocarpaceae
Plant Type Evergreen conifer
Mature Size 3 to 80 feet (and some taller) depending on species
Sun Exposure Full sun to partial shade
Soil Type Loamy, sandy, moist but well-drained
Soil pH Acidic, neutral
Bloom Time No blooms
Hardiness Zones 8 to 11, USDA
Native Area South America, Asia, Africa
Toxicity Toxic to pets1

Tips for Keeping Your Plants Healthy

  • When it comes to podocarpus trees, there are a few things you can do to keep them healthy. First, make sure they are getting enough water.
  • These plants are drought-tolerant, but they still need a consistent supply of moisture, especially when they are first getting established.
  • You can check the soil around your tree to see if it is dry; if it is, give your tree a deep watering.
  • Second, fertilize your tree regularly. This will help it to grow strong and healthy foliage.
  • There are many different types of fertilizer available; just be sure to use one that is specifically designed for evergreens.

Lighting and Temperature

Podocarpus trees do best in full sun or partial shade. They can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, from warm tropical climates to cool temperate zones.

However, they will not tolerate frost and should be protected from cold winds.


Soil type is important when it comes to growing podocarpus trees. They prefer well-drained, sandy soils with a high organic content.

If you’re planning on growing one of these trees in your garden, make sure to amend the soil accordingly.


Fertilizer isn’t necessary for podocarpus, as they are slow-growing. They prefer full sun but can tolerate partial shade.

Water them regularly, especially when the weather is hot and dry. If you live in an area with cold winters, protect your tree from the frost by covering it with a blanket or tarp.


Pruning is the best way to control the size and shape of your podocarpus tree. You can prune it into a hedge, or let it grow tall and slender.

If you live in an area with cold winters, you’ll need to protect your tree from the frost by wrapping it in burlap or covering it with a tarp.


Podocarpus can grow in a variety of soil types but prefer well-drained soil. They are drought tolerant once established, but will look better with regular watering during prolonged dry periods.


Podocarpus trees can range in size from small bushes to tall trees. The average height of a mature tree is between 20 and 30 feet, with some specimens reaching up to 50 feet tall.


Flowering plants are lovely, but they require a lot of upkeep. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance plant, the podocarpus is a great option.

Common Problems With Podocarpus Trees

Podocarpus trees are well-known for being underappreciated. They rarely cause difficult problems for gardeners, though some issues, such as leaf discoloration, can occur.

Brown leaves may indicate that the tree requires water. If this is the case, make sure to thoroughly water the tree.

Make sure the soil does not become too wet, as this could lead to additional problems.

Gray leaves may indicate overwatering, which can lead to root rot and fungal infections. Reduce the amount of water you use if you notice gray leaves.

If the soil isn’t draining well enough, try adding composted sand or finished compost around it to improve drainage.

By taking these simple steps, you can help your Podocarpus tree stay healthy and thrive.

Propagating Podocarpus Trees

Even though stem cuttings are often difficult to grow, they can be used for propagation.

If you want to try this method of propagation, you’ll need garden snips, a tiny pot, well-drained, rich pots, and a rooting hormone.

You can follow these steps: Cut a fresh growth branch into a 6 inch piece. Remove all of the leaves from the cut’s bottom. Dip the cut-off end of the plant in the rooting hormone.

Fill the pot with rich, moist, and well-drained soil. Then, carefully press the cut into the soil.

Ensure that the soil is moist until the roots form. With a little patience and care, your stem cutting will soon take root and begin to grow.

Types of Podocarpus Trees

The podocarpus macrophyllus “maki” is a small plant that can grow to be eight feet tall. They are most commonly used for smaller, well-pruned hedges.

The gracior podocarpus, also known as the afrocarpus gracilior, is a more robust tree that can grow to be 40 feet tall, but it can also be cut and maintained at lower levels or in unusual shapes.

The henkelii podocarpus is a distinct species that is distinguished by its long, dewy needle-like leaves, which lend the tree an evergreen appearance and a palm-like appearance. It can grow to be between 25 and 35 feet tall.

These are just a few of the many different types of podocarpus plants that are available. With so many options to choose from, you are sure to find the perfect plant for your needs.

How do you promote Podocarpus growth?

Podocarpus are lovely, low-maintenance plants that make a great addition to any landscape. If you’re looking to promote healthy growth in your Podocarpus, there are a few things you can do.

First, fertilize them regularly. They don’t require a lot of fertilizer, but a slow-release shrub and tree food in spring will help keep them healthy and promote deep greening.

Second, prune them regularly to shape them and encourage new growth. Podocarpus respond well to pruning, so don’t be afraid to trim them back.

Finally, give them plenty of water. They like moist soil, so water them regularly and make sure they’re getting enough moisture.

By following these simple tips, you can promote healthy growth in your Podocarpus plants.

How do I make my Podocarpus thicker?

Podocarpus trees are native to East Asia and Australasia, and are popular houseplants in the United States. They are easy to care for and have vibrant foliage that adds color and life to any room.

If you want to make your Podocarpus thicker, there are a few things you can do. First, prune the edges of the leaves in summer to promote a more vigorous growth.

You can also fertilize your tree with a high-nitrogen fertilizer in early spring. Finally, make sure that your tree has enough light.

Podocarps need at least four hours of indirect sunlight per day to thrive.

By following these simple tips, you can quickly add some extra density to your Podocarpus tree.

How long does it take Podocarpus to grow?

Podocarpus is a fast-growing plant that originates from Malaysia. It is an evergreen conifer that can reach up to 100 feet tall in the wild, although when cultivated, it is typically much smaller.

Podocarpus makes an excellent hedge or screen and can be grown indoors or out. When planting podocarpus, gardeners have the option of using cuttings or seeds.

Cuttings take root more quickly than seeds, but podocarpus seeds will eventually germinate – it just takes longer, sometimes up to six months.

With proper care, podocarpus can thrive in a variety of climates and makes a beautiful addition to any home or garden.

Can Podocarpus be kept short?

Podocarpus are a type of tree that is native to countries in the Southern Hemisphere.

They are known for their long, slender leaves and their ability to grow quite tall – up to 30 meters in some cases.

However, it is possible to keep podocarpus trees short, though it will require regular maintenance.

Podocarpus can be pruned into columns or hedges, and if done regularly, they will maintain their shape. However, if left unpruned, they will gradually become more oval in shape.

Consequently, if you want to keep your podocarpus tree short, it is important to be prepared to put in the time for regular pruning.

When should you trim Podocarpus?

The Podocarpus, also known as the Buddhist pine or yew, is a popular ornamental shrub. Prized for its dense foliage and purple or red fruits, the Podocarpus is often used as an accent plant in gardens.

If you are considering adding a Podocarpus to your landscape, you may be wondering when to trim it. Generally, pruning during summer will stimulate secondary growth that is just as attractive as spring growth.

Even though you may be cutting off the attractive purple or red fruits, cutting back in the middle of autumn through the end of summer could provide a more attractive bloom the next spring.

With proper care, a Podocarpus can provide year-round interest in your landscape.

Are Podocarpus slow growing?

Podocarpus is a genus of slow-growing, evergreen shrubs and trees. The name Podocarpus comes from the Greek words podos, meaning “foot,” and karpos, meaning “fruit.”

The plants in this genus are known for their slow growth rate, which makes them ideal for use as hedges and specimen plants.

They are salt-tolerant and cold-tolerant, making them well-suited for all areas of South Florida.

Podocarpus can be grown in shade or sun, but they will develop more slowly in shady conditions. With proper care, these plants can reach a height of 40 feet or more.

Is there a dwarf Podocarpus?

Podocarpus macrophyllus, also known as the Pringles Dwarf, is a small evergreen tree that is native to Japan.

It is a member of the Podocarpaceae family and is closely related to other members of this family, such as the yew and cedar.

The Pringles Dwarf has dark green, needle-like leaves and a thick growth habit.

It typically grows to be between 3 and 5 feet tall, making it an ideal plant for use as a specimen or low hedge. This tree is also popularly used as a bonsai tree.

While the Pringles Dwarf does not produce cones, it does produce small, yellowish-brown fruits that are loved by birds.

If you are looking for a small evergreen tree for your landscape, the Pringles Dwarf is an excellent choice.

How do you encourage podocarpus to grow?

Podocarpus plants are native to East Asia and prefer warm, humid climates. They can be planted in either full sun or partial shade, and prefer soil that is fertile and well-drained.

To encourage growth, Podocarpus plants should be kept moist but not wet. They can be fertilized monthly with a balanced fertilizer during the growing season.

When trimming the plants for hedges, it is best to only trim the top of the plant so that the sides can continue to grow together.

With proper care, Podocarpus plants can make an attractive addition to any landscape.

How do you keep Podocarpus from growing straight?

Podocarpus are a type of evergreen tree that is often used as a hedge or screen due to its dense, upright growth habit.

While this trait can be desirable in some situations, it can also be problematic if you are trying to create a more naturalistic landscape.

One way to encourage a more irregular growth pattern is to prune the tree on a regular basis.

This will promote the growth of new shoots and prevent the formation of long, straight branches.

Another method is to use a technique called coppicing, which involves cutting the tree back to ground level every few years.

This encourages the development of multiple trunks, resulting in a more sprawling form.

With a little effort, it is possible to keep Podocarpus from becoming too tall and leggy.

Jessica Miles

Jessica Miles is a writer for Botanique Boutique, a plant and gardening blog. She has always loved plants, flowers, and anything green. When she was younger, she used to watch her grandfather garden and would be in awe of the beautiful flowers he would grow. Now Jessica writes about all things related to plants and gardening - from beginner tips on how to start growing your own plants, to in-depth guides on caring for a specific type of flower or plant. She loves helping others learn about this fascinating hobby, and hopes that her writing will inspire people to get outside and enjoy nature!

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