Thuja occidentalis 'Hetz Wintergreen' / Hetz Wintergreen arborvitae

Thuja occidentalis 'Hetz Wintergreen' is a robust-growing, narrowly conical, upright selection of eastern arborvitae with a strong central leader and compact bright-green foliage that retains good color year-round. This quality is especially desireable in areas of the world that experience heavy snow load problems. It is an excellent choice for year-round screening, hedging, and windbreaks.

After 10 years of growth, a mature specimen will measure 15 feet (5 m) tall and 6 feet (2 m) wide, an annual growth rate of 1.5 feet (45 cm).

This cultivar originated as a seedling selected in the 1940s by F.C. Hetz and Fairview Evergreen Nursery, Fairview, Pennsylvania, USA.

Thuja occidentalis 'Hetz Wintergreen' — a 2008 accession at the New York Botanical Garden, The Bronx, New York (USDA Hardiness Zone 7a); photo from 2020.
Photo by Katherine Wagner-Reiss
Thuja occidentalis 'Hetz Wintergreen' illustrating the excellent screening and windbreak effect created by this cultivar. The plants shown in the photo are approximately 25 years of age and 35 feet tall, growing in Moline, Illinois.
Photo by Chub Harper
Thuja occidentalis 'Hetz Wintergreen' in Bickelhaupt Arboretum, Clinton, Iowa.
Photo by Dax Herbst


Thomas Leidell

Hello, I live in coastal New Jersey and was hoping you could recommend some fast growing and tall evergreens that would do well in fairly sandy soil close to salt water for privacy. The water table is also about 2 ft below ground level. Many thanks, Tom


As a Horticulturist in the Boston Metro-west area I tend to not plant Thuja occidentalis. Mostly because of the way the branches bend after a early late winter wet storm. Also because of deer major damage.. I usually go with Thuja x 'Green Giant'...

But-This variety of Thuja occ. DOES have a central leader and avoids bent branches that happens to other Thuja occientalis varieties.

If you have a smaller garden and you don't have deer issues this is a great screening selection for a 15' height hedge.

Green Giants get WAY bigger than these over time.