Continuing Care and New River Property Owners

Do you have concerns about cedar trees you’ve planted?

Have you recently purchased river property and noticed young cedars growing inside protective cages on your property?

They are northern white cedars and they were planted and protected by the previous property owner to ensure the river remains a healthy cold water fishery for future generations.  Here’s how to protect these trees through their maturity:

  • If you notice a slight discoloration of the leaves in the spring of the year, this will probably disappear as the weather warms. If this condition does not improve, watering the tree about 1/2 a bucket of water per week may help.
  • It is advisable to remove the weeds and grass from within the caged area at least once per year.
  • Make sure there is a protective wire netting over the top of the cage to prevent browsing deer from reaching down inside the cage to eat the tender tree tops.
  • If the cedar cage is deformed by falling tree limbs, please try to straighten the cage and top to continue protecting your cedar.
  • If your cedar is protected in a three-foot cage and it is about to out-grow it, a larger cage with new wooden stakes is available at McLean’s Ace Hardware, 209 James Street, Grayling, 989-348-2931. You will be asked to pay $5 for each set, which is about one half of its value. You may wish to call ahead to ensure that they have the pre-cut fence ready for you. They are not receiving any of the money for their stocking and distribution of this larger caging kit; please give them a big “Thank you!”.
  • If your cedar seedlings seems to be growing slowly, this is not unusual in some locations. If it remains green and looks healthy, you made need to just wait a few more years before it begins a “growth spurt”. Or, you can try moving it to a slightly different location which sometimes begins new growth activity.  Follow the planting instructions provided on the Cedar Care and Planting Kits page.
  • If you have any questions and wish to have someone take a look at your trees, please call Howard Johnson at 989-280-0381 or email at