WSU Clark County Extension

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Yellow Ribbon Arborvitae

Scientific name: Thuja occidentalis 'Yellow Ribbon'

Type:Evergreen shrubs
Plant Requirements
Zone:4 to 9
Sun:Full to partial sun
Plant Characteristics
Height:15 ft
Width:5 ft
Additional Characteristics



Wildlife value

Description The cultivar Yellow Ribbon is a distinctive, narrowly upright Eastern Arborvitae selection with golden-yellow foliage and a pyramidal, compact and tight form.

This is a columnar garden conifer that can grow to 15’ in height but stay only 5’ wide at maturity. In the spring the emerging foliage emerges orange but soon turns to green during the summer. The foliage is soft, bright green and arranged in somewhat vertical fanlike sprays. Upon close examination the small, scale-like leaves overlap forming flattened, rope-like shoots.

All told the foliage is half green (towards the inside) and half very bright yellow on the outer half. This striking contrast will please the gardener who likes golden foliage conifers.

This tree performs its best when it is planted on slightly sandy soil, in either full sun or partial shade. Make sure the site is well drained.

Spider mites can cause yellowing and speckling of the foliage. The mites are seldom noticed because they are so small. Spider mites are only a problem in hot, dry and dusty sites.
For assistance, contact Dr. Charles Brun (, (360) 397-6060 5701
Computing and Web Resources, PO Box 6234, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-6234