Skip to Content

How To Train Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar in 7 Simple Steps

The blue atlas cedar’s prostrate form is called weeping blue atlas cedar. Garden centers sell it trained so that you can grow them in a serpentine pattern before draping them back to the earth.

It appears to be manageable, but understanding its development tendencies is critical to turning it into an asset instead of a burden in the landscape. It is a moderate grower but can take off with proper cultural care. Learning how to train Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar is easy and fun.

It is native to the eastern Mediterranean and thrives in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 6 through 9. This plant likes to expand outwards if left to its own devices.

It finally grows into a stunning mess of main stems that extend out in all directions, each with a cascading canopy of blue foliage. It can reach a height of ten feet and a width of more than twenty feet. Not the kind of docile plant you’d see at a garden center, trained to crawl up a bamboo post.

This plant stands out in the landscape with its blue-green to blue-grey needle-like leaf, matte look, and fountain-like form. Early and consistent staking is necessary to preserve the weeping shape upright enough to be admired and appreciated.

According to the University of Alabama, it grows at a maximum rate of 1- 1 and 1/2 feet each year. A weeping blue atlas cedar’s training and care might take decades or perhaps a lifetime.

How To Train Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar
Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar Tree – via Flickr

A Garden Guide on How To Train Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar

Training weeping blue Atlas cedar is not difficult, but there are a few things you should keep in mind. The most important factor in training any tree is to provide the correct environment for it to grow in.

Weeping Blue Atlas cedars prefer full sun and well-drained soil. Various soil types can be used to grow them, but they like slightly acidic types of soils having a pH of 6.0 to 7.0.

One of the most important things to remember when training a weeping blue Atlas cedar is that they grow very slowly. It may take several years for your tree to reach its desired size. Be patient and continue to provide the correct care, and your tree will thrive.

Let’s see how to train weeping blue atlas cedar:

  1. When training a weeping blue Atlas cedar, you will want to start by selecting a strong branch that is growing in the desired direction. Choose the strongest and fattest verticals on a juvenile weeping blue atlas cedar that is pretty straight as a central leader branch. The central leader must be able to carry the weight of several lateral branches as the tree grows.
  2. Along the central leader, place a wooden timber stake that is as least as large as the leader. To provide the most support, keep the stake snugly against the leader’s side. Put the stake’s bottom into the ground.
  3. Attach the stake at three or more points along the length of the leader. To make the connections, use flexible garden ties. Use rope, wire, or any other stiff material to avoid gouging or girdling the woody tissue over time.
  4. Other vertical limbs that grow from the earth should be pruned away. Any growth that emerges horizontally or laterally from the primary leader should be left alone. This is where the tree’s basic T-shaped structure is established. Over time, multiplying lateral branches will form close to the top of the central leader, forming an extremely top-heavy T-shape. The lateral branches that drape down over and around the primary leader will eventually hide the T-shape.
  5. Allow additional branches to sprout from the primary lateral without cutting them back. Remove any vertical growth that is new and competing with the designated leader. As the weeping atlas cedar grows taller, replace the ties and stake with a longer and stronger stake and a few more ties. Replace the staking every other year to ensure that it is secure in the soil and supports the tree leader appropriately.
  6. Remove the stake when the tree’s trunk gets strong and wide enough to hold the tree inside this trained posture. This could take decades, or it may require more effort with the staking at all times.
  7. Replace wooden stakes with metal rebar on mature weeping cedars for a less noticeable staking option or when several stakes are needed to spread out and support up the weeping branches as the tree ages. Garden ties can hold heavy lateral branches to the tips of the rebar verticals, increasing the tree’s horizontal spread.
How To Train Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar 2
New weeping blue atlas cedar – via Reddit

How to Care for Blue Atlas Cedar After Staking

Based on how you train it, this cultivar will likely reach a height of 10 feet (3 meters) and width of twice that. Now that the tree is staked, it’s important to continue providing the correct care so that it can thrive. Here are a few things to remember:

The trees only need a lot of water the first year and are drought tolerant once they’ve matured. Ensure to water your tree regularly, especially during the first few years while it is growing.

Fertilize your tree twice a year with an organic fertilizer high in nitrogen. Prune your tree as needed to maintain its desired shape. Keep an eye out for pests and diseases, and treat them accordingly.

The soil around your tree should be well-draining, so if it’s not, you may need to amend it. Mulch around the base of your tree to help retain moisture and protect the tree’s roots. The light requirements for blue Atlas cedars are the full sun to partial shade.

When training a weeping blue Atlas cedar, it is important to use a sturdy stake and ties to help the tree grow in the desired direction. This will help maintain the tree’s shape and keep it healthy as it matures.

By following these care instructions, you can help ensure that your tree remains healthy and looks great for years to come! Enjoy your beautiful weeping blue atlas cedar!


Final Remarks

Weeping blue Atlas cedars make a beautiful addition to any garden and are sure to attract attention. By following the proper caring guide, you can help your weeping blue Atlas cedar grow into a beautiful and healthy tree.

Thanks for choosing this cultivar! Weeping blue atlas cedars are one of the most graceful and ornamental trees. With their weeping branches and dark green foliage, they add a touch of elegance to any landscape.

The tree can be trained in various ways because it is a free-form weeping plant. Allow it to grow sideways to form a cascading blue fountain leaves wall, or train it to drape down to the ground or grow as an arch.

A strong stake or support and material to bind the tree to the support without injuring or girdling the plant are required to train weeping atlas cedar.

With a little bit of TLC, you can train your own weeping blue Atlas cedar tree. Now that you know how to train Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar, get out there and start training your own! With a little bit of time and effort, you can create a stunning focal point for your garden.