Podocarpus lawrencei ‘Blue Gem’

blue mountain plum-pine

  • © Iseli Nursery, Randall C. Smith

Outstanding Qualities

This adaptable evergreen conifer is an easy to grow and colorful selection from Tasmania. In spring the new growth is a bright blue-green that deepens in tone as the summer progresses. It is one of the hardiest of the Podocarpus and one of the best blue foliage forms we can grow in the Northwest. The low, spreading habit is useful in the garden and it can tolerate pruning well and it can even be sheared to create a spectacular low blue hedge. Once established it is drought tolerant.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: spreading conifer

Foliage Type: evergreen

Plant Height: 4 ft. 0 in. (1.22 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 8 ft. 0 in. (2.44 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 4 ft. 0 in. (1.22 meters)

Plant Width-Mature: 12 ft. 0 in. (3.66 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun to light or open shade

Water Requirements: drought tolerant once established

Seasonal Interest: fantastic foliage looks great year-round with spring's red new growth a standout against the dark green old growth while in winter the red blushed foliage adds interest to the garden

Wildlife Associations: birds

Resistant to: aphids, slug, snail

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: gold, orange, silver, white

Great Color Partners: blue, burgundy, purple, red

Culture Notes
This useful evergreen conifer has its best color in full sun, but will tolerate open to light shade. It prefers a well-drained or sandy soil and can tolerate drought once well established. It will respond well to pruning and can be sheared to make a tight low hedge. If allowed to maintain its natural form little pruning is required.