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Lagarostrobos - Growing Guide
Growing Lagarostrobus franklinii
This peculiar plant is readily identifiable when discovered and seen for the first time. It is a coniferous tree originating from Tasmania where it is prized in furniture making. It is a member of the podocarpus family and was previously called Dacrydium franklinii which may also confuse.
It grows with us at Caerhays and Burncoose as a small, flat topped, graceful arching shrub from a central trunk. The overall height is only 10-12ft but the two main arching branches stretch out far longer than this. The drooping or mainly trailing branchlets are clothed with bright green scale-like leaves. The weight of these pendulous leaves and branchlets has caused both of our trees to lose one of their main branches possibly in gales or possibly from weight alone. They were about 30 years old when this occurred.
The conifer has large scale tiny inflorescences of upright pinkish-red stroboli which are effectively its flowers. These appear in May. We must assume that both our plants are male forms since we have never yet seen cones on our Huon pines.
Slow but straightforward is the reality of new growth cuttings taken in mid or late summer. However, since most of the growth is pendulous, it takes a quite a while to stake up and train up a leading shoot into a presentable small tree. Even then it will require more staking as it gets going in the ground.
Both our plants are in full sun in well drained acidic soil and are closely surrounded by other evergreens for protection.