Virginia Tech Dendrology

incense-cedar Cupressaceae Calocedrus decurrens (Torr.) Florin Listen to the Latin symbol: CADE27
Leaf: Persistent, scale-like, and arranged in decussate pairs, yellow-green and without bloom. Individuals leaves are typically 1/4 to 1/2 inch long, sets of four are several times longer than wide. Overlapping facial scales form a wine goblet shape. Foliage arranged in flattened, elongated, rumpled sprays, dead leaves fall in sprays.
Flower: Species is monoecious; male cones small and yellow; female cones small and yellowish-green; pollen is shed in mid-winter.
Fruit: Cones are about 1 inch long and appear to have 3 semi-woody scales (actually 6), yellowish brown when mature, resemble a duck's bill when closed and a flying goose when open.
Twig: Moderately stout; flattened when young, but eventually become round; reddish brown to grayish brown.
Bark: Purplish red, thin and scaly when young, increasing to several inches thick and developing rich reddish brown color with age; mature bark is furrowed with long, interlacing ridges formed by layers of bark that resemble stacked dinner plates.
Form: Moderate sized evergreen trees commonly reaching 70 to 100 feet tall and 3 to 5 feet in diameter.
Looks like: western redcedar - Port-Orford-cedar - Alaska yellow-cedar
leaf flower fruit twig bark form1 map
Additional Range Information: Calocedrus decurrens is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting incense-cedar.
More Information: Wood
External Links: USDAFS Silvics of North America - USDAFS Additional Silvics - USDA Plants Database - Horticulture Information - USDAFS Forest Products Lab
All material © 2018 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson; Silvics reprinted from Ag Handbook 654