Japanese Torreya

Torreya nucifera

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Japanese Torreya (Torreya nucifera) at New Garden Landscaping & Nursery

Japanese Torreya

Japanese Torreya

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Japanese Torreya (Torreya nucifera) at New Garden Landscaping & Nursery

Japanese Torreya foliage

Japanese Torreya foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  30 feet

Spread:  20 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  5b

Other Names:  Japanese Nutmeg-Yew


An unusual and rare evergreen of Japanese origin that is a member of the yew family; dark green, glossy foliage makes a great backdrop on the landscape; very slow growing with a loose pyramidal habit; protect from winter winds

Ornamental Features

Japanese Torreya has attractive dark green foliage which emerges light green in spring. The glossy needles are highly ornamental and remain dark green throughout the winter. It produces green nuts in late fall. The flowers are not ornamentally significant. The smooth red bark is extremely showy and adds significant winter interest.

Landscape Attributes

Japanese Torreya is an evergreen tree with a distinctive and refined pyramidal form. It lends an extremely fine and delicate texture to the landscape composition which can make it a great accent feature on this basis alone.

This is a relatively low maintenance tree, and can be pruned at anytime. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Japanese Torreya is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Vertical Accent

Planting & Growing

Japanese Torreya will grow to be about 30 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 20 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 3 feet from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 70 years or more.

This tree should only be grown in full sunlight. It does best in average to evenly moist conditions, but will not tolerate standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This species is not originally from North America.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Accent  Articulation 
Fruit  Foliage Color  Texture  Bark 
Ornamental Features