Instructions to Plant Cedar Trees


Cedar trees are evergreens found in just about every part of the country and come in many varieties. Deodar and blue atlas cedars can grow to more than 50 feet tall. These trees need very little care once established and make wonderful landscape borders and accents. Always try to purchase a variety that has been proved hardy in your area for the best success.

Step 1

Plant your tree in an open area that has full sun. The trees tend to spread far, so make sure there are no other plants or buildings within 20 feet. The area may be damp as long as it does not allow water to pool for very long after a hard rain.

Step 2

Dig a planting hole three times the diameter and the same depth of the root ball. Remove any lawn grass, weeds or stones from the soil. Amend the soil with one part compost and one part well-rotted manure to two parts original soil. Mix it all together well.

Step 3

Remove the tree from the pot or burlap you purchased it in. Using your fingers, gently spread out any tangled or curled-up roots. Place the tree in the planting hole, keeping the central trunk up straight.

Step 4

Place soil halfway up the hole covering half the roots. Water the soil to compact it around the roots and continue to fill the hole. The cedar tree should be at the same level in the ground that it was in the container. If it was wrapped in burlap, you will be able to see a soil line on the main trunk.

Step 5

Water until the area is completely saturated immediately after planting. Keeping the soil moist for two weeks will help the root system become established. After that, once-a-week watering will be fine for the first growing season. During the second and subsequent years, the tree will only need watering when the weather is very hot, dry or windy.

Step 6

Apply an evergreen fertilizer each spring. Follow recommendations of the manufacturer on the amount to apply per the size of the tree.

Step 7

Spread a 3-inch layer of organic mulch around the tree, keeping it 6 inches away from the trunk. Use the spread of the tree for the diameter and increase it each year as the tree grows.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost
  • Well-rotted manure
  • Evergreen fertilizer
  • Organic mulch


  • USDA Forest Service: Cedrus Deodara, Deodar Cedar
  • Virginia Tech.: Deodar Cedar Pinaceae Cedrus deodara
  • East Tennessee State University: The Blue Atlas Cedar (Cedrus atlantica)

Who Can Help

  • Oregon State University: True Cedars (Cedrus)
Keywords: growing cedar trees, planting Cedrus, evergreen tree care

About this Author

Dale DeVries is a retired realtor with 30 years of experience in almost every facet of the business. DeVries started writing in 1990 when she wrote advertising and training manuals for her real estate agents. Since retiring, she has spent the last two years writing well over a thousand articles online for Associated Content, Bright Hub and Demand Studios.