Plant Profile: Blue Atlas Cedar
Cedrus atlantica 'Glauca'

Click here to see a mature specimen.

Species Native Range: Atlas Mountains of North Africa
Hardiness: USDA Zones 6-9
Mature Size: 60 feet tall and 40 feet wide
Exposure: Full sun to light shade
Soil: Loose with organic matter, well-drained
Ease of Culture: Easy

If you have ever seen the beautiful Colorado Blue Spruce trees that live up north but have been unsuccessful in growing one in Georgia, you now have an alternative. Unlike spruce trees that resent hot weather, the Blue Atlas Cedar takes it in stride. Also unlike spruce trees, the BAC has a much faster growth rate. Just make sure to give it plenty of room to mature without having to prune it. As a young tree, the BAC will be somewhat stiff and "stick-like" in appearance, but will soften and spread with age (don't we all!).

Plant the Blue Atlas Cedar in full sun to light shade in an open area as a specimen or in a loose group in an area large enough to accommodate them. Since the BAC casts dense shade as it ages, turf will not grow underneath it. However, since BAC's habit is to have graceful arching branches practically to the ground, it only needs mulch underneath it. It can be limbed up to plant shade-tolerant plants underneath, but I think this would detract from its overall appearance.

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