European Yew as houseplant?

hexalmNovember 2, 2010

I've been rooting a small Irish Yew cutting and it finally seems to have become viable. I'm planting to overwinter it indoors, but does anyone know if European yew trees can be kept indoors indefinitely?

I began wondering after realizing that most temperate conifers don't tend to survive indoors, especially not those from misty isles growing in a humid place like Seattle.

Anyway, I was able to learn about the Asian yew varieties, but no info on European yews being kept indoors. Any thoughts or experience on this out there?

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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

While a few species of evergreen conifers that are happy in warmer climes will tolerate indoor conditions to varying degrees, the temperate plants probably will react poorly. They need a cold, dormant rest period to grow, and in many cases even remain viable in the subsequent (to winter) growth period, and will also rebel at the low light and humidity generally found indoors.

Having several species of Taxus growing as bonsai, I over-winter all in an unheated garage. I'm sure yours could be left outdoors all winter with some protection if the plant is rated to zone 7 or colder.


    Bookmark   November 2, 2010 at 9:23AM
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tsugajunkie z5 SE WI

If its newly rooted you may get by with overwintering inside this year but I wouldn't keep it there indefinately. And with you being in zone 8, keeping it inside may not be needed for even a newly rooted plant. If you have Taxus baccata (Irish Yew) it is usually listed as zone 6 hardy but I've seen older specimens in Iowa's zone 4-5 and I have one in my zone 5 which has seen -17 degrees.


    Bookmark   November 2, 2010 at 6:09PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Temperate plants in containers, deprived of a suitable period of dormancy, often unexpectedly go dormant at some point in the subsequent growth cycle. This can even occur in the middle of summer, and is usually fatal to the plant, unless it is recognized for what it is and a suitable period of chill (refrigeration) furnished to release the plant from dormancy. This holds as true for for newly rooted cuttings (actually for UNrooted cuttings as well) as it does for older, established plants.

Attempting to over-winter the plant indoors will seriously increase the odds it will not survive the winter and ensure a very weak plant (at best) come spring.


    Bookmark   November 2, 2010 at 11:07PM
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Thanks for the responses. I suspected it might be best to treat it like a temperate plant since it is one, but I'm still pretty inexperienced at growing things (particularly, things I found growing outside). This one's going back outside.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2010 at 10:25PM
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