Calocedrus decurrens
Common name: 
Incense Cedar
kal-o-SED-rus de-KER-enz
formerly Libocedras decurrens
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Conifer (but not a true cedar), evergreen, stiff or narrowly columnar in youth, 70-110 ft (20-35 m) tall, regular in outline, branchlets flattened, terminating in dense, fan-like sprays, wedge-shaped joints.   Bark light or reddish brown.  Leaves in 4's closely pressed, a "fluted wine-glass" pattern formed by each outside (lateral) pair of leaves, lustrous dark green throughout the year (little or no winter browning), emitting an aromatic odor when crushed.  Male cones small (3 mm), yellow, female cones cylindrical, 2-2.5 cm long, composed of 6 paired, flattened, and pointed scales ("duck-beaks"), ripening in early autumn.
  • Sun or partial shade. Prefers moist, well-drained, fertile soils, but shows adaptability to different soil types. Does not usually develop brown "winter burn" color as does Thuja plicata.
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 5     Native range from western Oregon to Nevada, south to California.  It is one of the four native "cedars" (so-called) found in Oregon.  For a comparison of the four "cedars" see Four "cedar" species native to Oregon.
  • The cultivar 'Maupin Glow' has yellow and green foliage.
  • calocedrus: from the Greek, kalos, beautiful, and kedros, cedar; decurrens: extending down (L).
  • Oregon State Univ. campus: older tree south of Fairbanks.
Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit

    plant habit

  • plant habit, screen

    plant habit, screen

  • branchlets


  • branchlets


  • leaves


  • branchlets, comparison

    branchlets, comparison

  • leaves, comparison

    leaves, comparison

  • branchlets and male cones

    branchlets and male cones

  • branchlets and female cones

    branchlets and female cones

  • female cones, current season

    female cones, current season

  • female cone, previous season

    female cone, previous season

  • male and female cones

    male and female cones

  • trunk, bark

    trunk, bark

  • trunk,bark, older tree

    trunk,bark, older tree