American Pillar Arborvitae

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Aptly referred to as "Full Speed A-Hedge" you won't find a faster-growing hedge tree than the American Pillar Arborvitae (Thuja occidentalis 'American Pillar'). Its thick yet narrow growing habit makes it perfect for privacy screens on the edge of properties!

The story of this Pillar Arborvitae is also one of a kind. John Houser found an unusual branch mutation on a tree while walking through his nursery and knew he had found something very special. So special, that at 85 years old, he postponed his retirement so he could patent the tree because he knew the properties of the American Pillar Arborvitae could be immensely useful to landscapers and home gardeners alike!

The American Pillar Arborvitae is an evergreen with a beautiful lush green color all year long. Plus, there is no reason to worry about pine cones littering the yard as this specimen doesn't produce any! Tall anchors and accents, these are safe at corners of your home or a building, or as a backdrop and privacy fence!

Planting and Application:

It didn't take long at all for others to see the potential, soon it was one of the most used as a hedge. American Pillar Arborvitae trees are incredible for privacy screens! Use around seating and entertaining areas outdoors for cover and light shade, plus wind and sound dampening. Create your own meditation area to go and be sheltered from the world, even if just for a little while. Great living fences, backdrops to garden beds, and barriers that define your property.

The most remarkable part of this plant is its stunning growth habit. You can expect American Pillar Arborvitae trees to grow up to three feet per year for the first couple of years. Growing to a height much taller than you or I, it will stay very narrow while maintaining its thickness. All of this helped make it a staple for homeowners looking to hide an unpleasant sight fast!

  • Extremely Fast Growing
  • Tall, Narrow Habit & Rapid Growth Rate
  • Dense, Green Columnar-Shaped Evergreen
  • Long-Lived & Low Maintenance
  • Privacy & Screening, Borders, Anchors & Accents

#ProPlantTips for Care: 

Creating the perfect growing environment for this Pillar Arborvitae is quite easy as well! It likes well-drained but moist soil along with full sun to partial shade. Due to its 'Hetz Wintergreen' bloodline, this specimen was both cold-hardy and heat tolerant! Add a 3-4 inch thick layer of arborist mulch over the root system to hold in moisture & insulate them from cold and heat.

  • Full Sun & Partial Shade
  • Moderately Moist Well-Drained Soil
  • Cold Hardy & Heat Tolerant
  • Stays Under 30 feet - Safe Under Power Lines
  • Deer Resistant

There's no doubt about it, the American Pillar Arborvitae has set the new standard for privacy hedges and screens. If you're looking to hide an eyesore in your garden, there is no better plant than this one. Order your fast-growing trees and shrubs today at and watch as a beautiful hedge shoots up right before your eyes!

Frequently Asked Questions

How fast does American Pillar Arborvitae grow?

The American Pillar Arborvitae is a fast-growing evergreen shrub. You can expect an American Pillar Arborvitae to grow up to three feet per year for its first couple of years.

How tall does American Pillar Arborvitae grow?

The tall and columnar American Pillar Arborvitae can reach a mature height of 20-25 feet in optimal conditions. While only adding 3-4 feet in mature width.

How far apart should I plant American Pillar Arborvitae?

American Pillar shrubs can be planted 3 feet apart on center to create a very close privacy living fence, or alternated in a zig-zag pattern or spaced in rows 3-5 feet apart for an informal screen. Spacing is measured from the center trunk of one tree measured to the central trunk of the next planted tree.

How long do American Pillar Arborvitae live?

Arborvitae are very long-lived shrubs! The American Pillar are tall plants that can reach a ripe old age of up to 50 years old or more in optimal conditions.

What Shipping Options Do You Offer? works closely with our growers and nursery professionals to ensure we ship when it is most appropriate for your area. Our goal is to deliver the hardiest plants by avoiding extreme high and low temperatures. Check out our shipping schedule for more information and to learn our wills and won’ts when it comes to shipping plants. Find your American Pillar Arborvitae for sale here at!

Buying Options for Plants

Nature Hills sells a large variety of plants with several options available. Plants are offered in both potted containers and as dormant bare root without soil. Here is a helpful resource to understand your options as you create a beautiful landscape with help from Nature Hills.

Ever wonder what a larger plant will mean for your landscape? Container Sizes are really all about the age of the plant!

Seasonally, Nature Hills offers hand selected, high quality bare root trees, shrubs and perennials. Bare root plants are sold by height from the top of the root system to the top of the plant. Plants may be taller than the height minimums.

  • Popular sizes of select trees are 1 foot, 2 feet, 3 feet, etc.
  • Popular sizes of select bare root plants is 1 foot, 18 inches, etc.

Nature Hills Container Size by Volume

Keep in mind, specific varieties and different growing conditions can affect the rate at which plants grow. Variations in size may occur.

Young Plants to 18 Months
Size Volume
2"x2"x3" Ranges from .18 to .21 dry quarts / .198 to .23 dry liters in volume
4.5" Container Equal to .65 dry quart / .72 dry liter in volume
Sprinter Pot Equal to .63 dry quart / .69 dry liter in volume
4" Container Ranges from .31 to .87 / .35 to .96 dry liter in volume
6" Container Equal to 1.4 dry quarts / 1.59 dry liters in volume
1 Quart Equal to 1 dry quart / 1.1 dry liter in volume
5.5" Container Equal to 1.89 of a dry quart / 2.08 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x5" Ranges from .8 to 1.1 dry quarts / .88 to 1.2 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x6" Ranges from 1.0 to 1.3 dry quarts / 1.1 to 1.41 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x9" Ranges from 1.1 to 2.1 dry quarts / 1.2 to 2.3 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x10" Ranges from 1.7 to 2.3 dry quart / 1.87 to 2.53 dry liters in volume
Plants 18 Months - 2.5 Years Old
Size Volume
2 Quart Equal to 2 dry quarts / 2.2 dry liters in volume
#1 Container Ranges from 2.26 to 3.73 dry quarts / 2.49 to 4.11 dry liters in volume
5"x5"x12" Equal to 3.5 to 4.3 dry quarts / 3.85 to 4.74 dry liters in volume
Plants 2 - 4 Years Old
Size Volume
#2 Container Ranges from 1.19 to 1.76 dry gallons / 5.24 to 7.75 dry liters in volume
#3 Container Ranges from 2.32 to 2.76 dry gallons / 10.22 to 12.16 dry liters in volume
Plants 3 - 5 Years Old
Size Volume
#5 Container Ranges from 2.92 to 4.62 dry gallons / 12.86 to 20.35 dry liters in volume
#6 Container Ranges from 5.25 to 6.01 dry gallons / 23.12 to 26.42 dry liters in volume
#7 Container Ranges from 5.98 to 6.08 dry gallons / 26.34 to 26.78 dry liters in volume

About Plant Sentry™

Plant Sentry is designed to protect both consumers and the nursery trade from invasive plant pests and diseases. Sites that display the Plant Sentry protection badge are protected from consumers buying and nurseries shipping material carrying invasive pests and diseases.

This proprietary eCommerce software prevents the shipment of a restricted plant to each state. The Plant Sentry system includes a shipment certification program. The Plant Sentry Compliance Officer works closely with and each nursery or fulfillment center to ensure only compliant plants are sold to customers.

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Plant Sentry


To obtain a more accurate shipment time-frame, simply enter your zip code in the “Find Your Growing Zone” box to the right. Our plants are grown all over the country and lead time on items may be different because of this. Once your order is placed, you will also receive the specific shipment time-frame information as part of your order confirmation. Once an item ships, you will receive shipment notification and tracking numbers, so you can follow along while your plant travels to your doorstep. We use FedEx, UPS, or USPS at our discretion.

Due to winter weather we have put a hold on shipping to the areas shown below in grey. You can still order now and we will ship the plant to you during an appropriate time for your zone.

*If you have found your zone already, it will be highlighted in the table below.
Color Zone Times
3 Spring 2019
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Shipping Rates

At Nature Hills we handle, package and ship the products you order with the utmost care to ensure healthy delivery. Shipping and handling charges are calculated based on the tables below. Please note that some items include an additional handling surcharge, these will be noted on the item's product page.

From To S&H
0 - 19.99 24.99
20 - 49.99 29.99
50 - 69.99 34.99
70 - 99.99 39.99
100 - 129.99 44.99
130 - 149.99 48.99
150 - 150+ Approx 28%

Click here to see our full rates


American Pillar Arborvitae Is Suited to Grow in Zones 3-8
Growing Zones 3-8
More Information
Brand Nature Hills' Choice
Botanical Name Thuja occidentalis 'American Pillar'
Mature Height 20 - 25 feet
Mature Spread 3 - 4 feet
Sun Exposure Full Sun
Soil Moist, Well-Drained
Moisture Moderate
Growth Rate Fast
Flower Color Evergreen
Foliage Evergreen
Foliage Color Green
Fall Color Evergreen
Pollinator Friendly No