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Japanese Yew

Podocarpus macrophyllus

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Japanese Yew (Podocarpus macrophyllus) at Roger's Gardens

Japanese Yew

Japanese Yew

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Japanese Yew (Podocarpus macrophyllus) at Roger's Gardens

Japanese Yew foliage

Japanese Yew foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  30 feet

Spread:  15 feet

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade 

Hardiness Zone:  7b

Other Names:  Kusamaki, Inumaki, Buddhist Pine


This is a showy evergreen with an irregular columnar habit that can be massed as a screen; will tolerate low light situations; adds a wonderful texture to a border

Ornamental Features

Japanese Yew has attractive dark green evergreen foliage which emerges light green in spring on a tree with a columnar habit of growth. The glossy narrow leaves are highly ornamental and remain dark green throughout the winter.

Landscape Attributes

Japanese Yew is an evergreen tree with a narrowly upright and columnar growth habit. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other landscape plants with less refined foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance tree, and can be pruned at anytime. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Japanese Yew is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Mass Planting

Planting & Growing

Japanese Yew will grow to be about 30 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 15 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 3 feet from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 50 years or more.

This tree does best in full sun to partial shade. It does best in average to evenly moist conditions, but will not tolerate standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This species is not originally from North America.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Accent  Massing 
Foliage Color  Texture 
Ornamental Features