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Instant Privacy® Trees
“Thin Man” Arborviate
Thuja occidentalis "SMTOTM"
Center Photo: Big Thin Mans at our Nursery Tree Farm. The tallest one is 15' 6" and still growing very fast.
Left Photo: "Starter crop" of Thin Man seedlings at our River Growing Fields. Right Photo: Rows of 8' Thin Mans at our River Growing Fields.
This is a privacy tree we've spent years looking for and developing--a tree tall and narrow like the Emerald Green Arborvitae but faster-growing and taller at maturity. Introducing the "Thin Man" Arborvitae. You won’t find these anywhere else—we are the only nursery tree farm in the Northwest offering the "Thin Man" Arborvitae, with hundreds of Thin Mans growing in our fields.
We planted a small crop of these trees several years ago and have since planted two other, larger, crops. We have been very satisfied with the rate and quality of the trees’ growth and feel that it fills an important "gap" in privacy trees. But because this is a new cultivar we cannot be sure what the mature height and width will be, so we are estimating those based on our experience. These issues are discussed further below.
Mature Height: 22-25' (Estimated; may be taller; see discussion below)
Mature Width: 4' (Estimated)
Sunlight: Full sun, partial sun.
Soil:. Needs well-drained soil.
Growth Rate: Fast—approximately 2' a year once established, depending on growing conditions. See discussion below.
"Instant Privacy" Use: A narrow tree taller and faster growing than the Emerald Green Arborvitae..
"Instant Privacy" Spacing: 2' or 2.5’ “centers”.
What to Expect the First Year: As with all newly-planted trees, these need to be watered carefully through the first Spring/Summer--see our "Care of Your Trees" section for more details. Not as much growth the first year because the tree is putting its efforts into its root system. Possibly some small branches that were broken during installation will turn brown (cut them off or just leave them and they will fall off).
Comments: As mentioned, this is our first crop of these trees offered for sale and we are still learning about them. Please scroll down to see a further discussion of the Thin Man attributes..
Sizes & Prices
“Thin Man” Arborvitae
Please Note: These trees are only available for sale if NurseryTrees.com is also hired to plant them. (Why?)
8' Tall B&B $275.00
9' Tall B&B $350.00
10' Tall B&B $425.00
Please Note: Our supply of trees is constantly changing; please contact us to confirm availability.
More Thin Man information:
A Note on What We Don't Know about the Thin Man
What is the Thin Man's Mature Height & Width?
We have not grown a Thin Man to maturity and we don't believe anyone else has either. Growing a tree to maturity can take many, many years, and because the Thin Man is a new "cultivar" (a plant produced by selective breeding) it just hasn't been around long enough to grow to its mature height/width. So we won't know the Thin Man's mature height and width until several years from now and in the meantime we are making educated guesses. This uncertainty is "part of the deal" when buying Thin Mans.
A Google search for "Thin Man Arborvitae" will show conflicting information from a variety of sellers including Wal-mart and Amazon (Hirt's Gardens), the Arbor Day Foundation ("attracts butterflies") , and several nurseries around the country. There is a lot of differing information about the tree and its growing requirements, and photos of trees that may or may not be Thin Mans. Mature height, for instance, varies from 12-15' to up to 30' depending on the website visited.
Under these circumstances, we have chosen to focus not on what someone else says about Thin Mans but on the characteristics of the trees we are growing here in Snohomish, WA. Thin Man's genus is "Thuja" and we have grown other Thujas for many years--Emerald Green Arborvitae, Green Giants, Excelsa Cedar. Also, we have been growing Thin Mans for several years now so we have hundreds of well-established trees to study and test. We like everything we have seen from the Thin Mans and feel it is worth growing--a tall, narrow, fast-growing tree is the "holy grail" of privacy trees. They fill a much-needed gap between Emerald Green Arborvitae--narrow but slow-growing with a mature height of 15' or so--and Green Giants/Excelsa Cedars--faster-growing, taller, but much wider.
This past growing season we charted our Thin Mans' growth and you will see a description of that below. To our knowledge, no one else in the country is doing this type of a study with the Thin Man. One initial comment: The tallest Thin Man we have here at the farm is a beautiful tree that is now 15'6" and grew an amazing 3' this last growing season (see photo at the top of this page). So these trees are going to be much taller than 15', and faster-growing than we initially thought. All good.
Our 2021 Thin Man Growth Study
In early May of 2021 we measured and tagged 18 Thin Mans at various locations in our growing fields. The labeled trees can be broken down into two general catagories:
"Control Trees": 7of the trees were "control" trees--healthy trees which have been growing for several years in the best growing conditions at the farm (full sunlight and well-drained soil). We just left them where they were; measured and tagged them. Some of them we also pruned in various ways.
"Special Studies": We measured and tagged another 11 trees and planted them in new locations so we could study the effect of poor sunlight, wet soil, poor sunlight & wet soil, and whether deer would bother them.
It is too early to conclude much from the "Special Studies" group of trees; we will report on that as conclusions are made. But the first group of "Control Group" trees has shown some very satisfactory growth rates. Below is the Growth Chart of these trees--it shows that between May 1, 2021-September 22, 2021--basically one growing season--these trees grew an average of over 28 inches in height, and grew in width over 4". The fastest-growing tree, #7, grew from 12'4" to $15'6", over 3' of growth. Wow. Based on these results we have changed the Thin Mans to be "fast growing" and increased the estimated mature height to 22-25' (and it could be taller).
It is worth mentioning again that these Control Group trees have been growing in their same location for several years. They would not have grown as much if we had dug them and planted them in a new location, such as a planting job for a Customer. A "rule of thumb" is that it takes a newly-planted tree 3 years to become established: The first year they are putting out roots in their new location and so don't add much height/width. The second year they grow more but are still setting their roots, and then the third year they are fully established or close to it. All of the Control Group trees are fully-established (although the least-established, #6, also showed the least growth). Note that the trees in the "Special Studies" group--poor sunlight, etc.--were moved to new locations so they are "starting over".
Test Trees #7 and #8
In 2015/2016 we searched far and wide for Thin Mans as part of our efforts to find and develop a new narrow, tall, fast-growing privacy tree. In April, 2016 we were able to find two Thin Mans. They were in 2 gallon pots approximately 2' tall and we planted them in our farm field that month. We watered them well their first year but after that have just let them grow. They are in a prime location--full sunlight and well-drained, good quality soil. 6 growing seasons later (April 2016-October 2021) Test Trees #7 and #8 are over 15' tall and each grew approximately 3' in 2021, all of which is very, very satisfactory.
Test Trees #7 and #8--2023 UPDATE
June 15, 2023--Tree #7 is 15' tall, Tree #8 is 14' tall. Both trees still nice and straight.
Very satisfactory growth!
Other Test Trees
All other "Control Group" Test Trees are located at our River Growing Fields. We have several hundred Thin Mans growing there now which started like the 18-24" "Starter Trees" in the right photo that we recently planted. Our other "Control Group" Test Trees are taken from trees we planted in 2017/2018:
The tree with the white spot on is is Test Tree #1 (the white is our Growth Chart label). That Test Tree #1 was 6'6" on May 1, 2021, and 8' 6" on October 1, 2021--two feet of growth in that time period. All healthy and nice and straight.
What will a Line of Thin Mans Look Like as They Grow?
The Thin Mans grow nice and straight as shown in the photos. Everyone says they will make a great privacy screen and we agree. That said, there will naturally be "gaps" along the tops of a privacy screen no matter what tree is used because the tops are typically narrower. And sometimes there are gaps between the trees when they are planted to take into account future growth. There is also a chance that a tree this narrow will lean as it gets taller although all the trees we are growing, including 15-16' tall trees, are nice and straight. If they do start to separate as they get taller, there may be steps that can be taken to improve that such as pruning the tops of the trees when they provide a full screen so they don't get taller than necessary, or securing the trees along the top sections. Or just recognizing that they won't be perfectly straight but are still a good screen. We just can't say for sure because no one has seen it.
Sunlight and Soil Requirements
As noted, full sunlight and well-drained high-quality soil are the optimum conditions for the Thin Man. We are currently conducting experiments with lower-sunlight, wet-soil, attractiveness to deer, various pruning/care options to strengthen the tree, etc. More information to follow on this.
Delivery & Planting Available
We deliver and plant these trees. "Planting" includes a watering system, staking if necessary, and a one year warranty for no additional charge. Our planting "Service Area" is the greater Puget Sound area of Western Washington: Bellingham, Mt. Vernon, Everett, Edmonds, Mukilteo, Shoreline, Bothell, Seattle & the "East Side"--Bellevue, Woodinville, Kirkland, Issaquah, Sammamish, etc.--Renton, Kent, Federal Way, Tacoma, south to Olympia and all points in between; plus Highway 2 to Leavenworth & Wenatchee. If you are not in this area, sorry but we will not be able to plant for you.
Click Here for more information about our planting services and/or see the "Advantages" section below.
To Get Started
Please fill-out our Request for a Free Estimate form, or simply call or e-mail us.
OTHER USEFUL RESOURCES:
This Chart helps you easily compare mature sizes, growing conditions, etc.
for all of our privacy trees.
See our Trees Growing in the Fields!
We have a beautiful 8 minute drone video of our Snohomish tree farm
with many of the trees identified. Click here
Studies: Trees Add Value to Property
Privacy Trees: We are a nursery tree farm specializing in Privacy Trees for screening. We sell retail & wholesale, for residential and commercial projects and we "deliver & plant" our trees. Our most common project is planting a line of privacy trees for a homeowner. We have several thousand privacy trees growing at our Snohomish farm. Plus we have many years' experience in "what works where", professional planting services, ongoing support, and thousands of satisfied customers. Buying directly from a grower has great advantages--fresh trees, great selection, and low prices--you maximize your purchasing power. We also have privacy trees that are not available elsewhere, such as our "Hedged Privacy Trees" and "Thin Man" Arborvitae. You can see our hedged and natural privacy trees in our beautiful 8 minute YouTube Farm Video.
Ornamental Trees: We also have a nice selection of Ornamental Trees, with many of our trees being on the "Great Plant Picks" list for the Pacific Northwest.
Delivery & Planting: We usually deliver & plant our trees for Customers. Click here for more information.
Free Estimates: We will help you determine which trees are right for your project, and provide you with free, no-obligation estimates. This is often accomplished by e-mail and phone, usually first using our online Free Estimate Request Form. Where necessary, we will send one of our experts out to review the project (no cost or obligation). More information
Location: We’re conveniently located just 15 minutes north of Woodinville. We are a farm, not a retail nursery so we don't keep regular retail hours; instead we set up appointments so that we can focus on your project. So please set-up an appointment instead of "just coming out". Here's a link to our "Directions" page.
Covid-19 Precautions: In accordance with the Governor's directives we have made some changes in the way we do things. For a detailed break-down of these steps please see our "Covid-19 Precautions" webpage.
Payment: We don’t require any money “up front”—you only pay when the job is completed (unusual exceptions to this are large/special projects or lengthy “holds” on trees). Be careful of contractors asking for “up front” money; they might not come back!
Warranty & Support: When we plant your trees we include staking (if necessary), transplanting fertilizer, and an easy-to-use watering system that hooks into your garden hose. More information. We also give a one year Warranty on trees we plant, for no additional charge. More information We have a detailed “Care of Your Trees” section of our website, and provide ongoing support--we're available to answer your questions as your new trees grow. More information
Customer Service: We pride ourselves on our Customer Service—real people answering the phone. We have an "A+" rating with the Better Business Bureau (their highest rating), are an Angie's List Super Service Award winner, have excellent reviews on Yelp, Google, etc. and a 100% satisfaction rating with eBay.
Our Business: We’ve been in business since 1995 and have a dedicated, experienced staff, most of whom have been with us for many years. See: "About Us" for our history. We are a registered Washington State contractor (License Number: NURSEL*956J1). More information Be sure to hire a registered contractor -- to go to the Department of Labor & Industries website to check a contractor's registration, click here. As it says there: "Unregistered contractors carry no bond or insurance to protect consumers. Consumers can face serious issues if anything goes wrong on a job." These liability risks are in addition to fraud, poor workmanship, worthless warranties, etc. We are fully bonded and insured, of course.
Customer Satisfaction: Most important of all is what our customers think of us:
"I am really pleased with your work. You saved me several thousand dollars, steered me away from trees that wouldn't work, provided healthy and beautiful trees, did a great job planting them, and did everything on time and on schedule. You can quote me." Jo, Vashon Island
"Our privacy bank of trees has done nothing but grow well into maturity. Our back yard and deck area is totally private and the 10 trees your team planted [in 2005] are rich, leathery and dark green. We remark on them every day it seems. Please include me in any of your "Testimonials" as you would be hard pressed to find a more satisfied customer." Jim, Port Orchard
"For quality vs. value, your trees are the best landscape purchase I’ve ever made." Jeff, Seattle
"Michael, I just wanted to pass along a note to tell you how thrilled I am with the trees. The effect they have brought to our new courtyard in the front of our home here in Seattle has exceeded my expectations!" Chip Hanauer, Hydroplane Driver--Click Here to see his project.
"I work in customer service so I know good service when I experience it and you have my top rating. I would definitely recommend you to anyone who needs new landscaping. Thanks again.” Carol, Camano Island
"The [new] trees were a great privacy feature when we sold the last house! We now have a much larger space we want to talk with you about . . " Katherine, Fall City
“My compliments to your crew. We’ve had a lot of contractors working on our house recently and we’ve seen the entire range; and your guys were excellent. The trees make things look so much better—I started smiling as soon as I saw them going in." Holly, Queen Anne
"You guys are the best nursery I've ever done business with! And I have dealt with a few. You did what you said you would, on time with attention to detail rarely found. From the beginning of the quote process all the way through to the last detail you made it easy. And you work to ensure that the trees will thrive after planting with detailed advice, a complementary irrigation system, and a website filled with useful information. Most nurseries will just dump off the goods and tell you best of luck, put some water on them. You provide a quality product that sets you apart. Your crew was friendly, polite and operated as a well organized team. I would recommend you without hesitation! Thanks for doing a great job!” Ryan, Buckley
"We can not believe how beautiful your trees are. The privacy is unbelievable. If you ever need a testimonial let us know. Our yard is perfect! We sit there and say "my oh my”! Suzanne, Tacoma
"I don't think I've ever been as happy with something I've purchased." Sarah, Sammamish
Many More Testimonials (click here)
Our Convenient Location
20 minutes from I-405/Bothell-Woodinville
View Directions to our location.
Sales by "Appointment Only", please
Serving Washington State Since 1995
13510 Old Snohomish-Monroe Road
Snohomish, WA 98290
(425) 953-5780 fax
Sales by "Appointment Only", please
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