The Cupressaceae family includes dozens of conifers native to temperate climates, both shrubs and tall trees. Specific species within the family are noted for their long-life, including the Mediterranean Cypress, which is also known as the Italian Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens). This particular species is known to live over 1,000 years.
Cypress Trees are historically relevant to gardeners, who have been planting a variety of Cypress Trees for thousands of years. Despite their longevity, Cypress Trees do not typically exceed a height of 70 feet, and many Cypress Trees are much shorter, averaging near 40 feet tall. For this reason, many gardeners choose to plant Cypress Trees in rows as privacy barriers or privacy screens to mark property lines.
These fast-growing evergreen trees often withstand poor soils and demonstrate quick privacy or windbreak screen growth, with specific species noted for their drought tolerance. Most Cypress Trees, however, prefer wet areas with moderate to heavy rainfall. Several species of Cypress actually prefer to grow in flood-plains and swampy areas, such as the Bald Cypress.
Depending on the species chosen, the Cypress Tree may require a variety of different soil components, watering schedules, and daily maintenance. Whenever planting a new tree, it is important to take the tree’s needs into consideration. Many Cypress species, such as the Italian Cypress, Leyland Cypress, and Drought Tolerant Evergreen Cypress, manage well with minimal effort on the part of the landscaper. Review the quick-care facts for Cypress Trees before reading the specific needs for planting and caring for Cypress Trees in the following sections.
How to Buy Cypress Trees
Cypress Trees require extreme care in the initial stages of growth, something The Tree Center provides. Several varieties of Cypress Trees can be chosen, with the most popular varieties available at The Tree Center, including the Leyland Cypress and Italian Cypress. Read about the specific variety options below and choose the right Cypress for the specific location. Then, contact The Tree Center to obtain a well-bred, well-loved tree.
How to Plant Cypress Trees
Any new tree requires careful planning prior to planting. Read about the specifics for planting a Cypress Tree below:
Sun: Plant in full sun.
Water: Water immediately after planting and once per week for the first six months, unless it rains. Varies based on species.
When to Plant: Late fall or early spring is best for planting. The Cypress will begin vigorous tree in the spring.
The first step in the planting process is to identify a planting location. If planting a Cypress Tree privacy screen, locate a stretch of land which with full-grown trees will provide additional privacy to the yard. Cypress Trees can also be planted as ornamental trees, and their unique feathery coniferous evergreen leaves will act as a garden accent. Locate an area in full sun – Cypress Trees prefer areas without shade. Also, be sure to choose an area with regular water from either natural rainfall or irrigation systems.
Next, order the Leyland Cypress, Italian Cypress, Drought Tolerant Evergreen Cypress or Dwarf Hinoki Cypress from The Tree Center.
Once the tree arrives, prepare a hole for the tree, or prepare holes for the privacy screen. Observe the collection of roots from the tree, also known as the root ball. Then, dig a hole three times the width of the root ball. Do not be overly concerned with depth. If the hole is too deep, oxygen and water will not be able to reach the Cypress Tree roots. The hole should be about three inches less deep than the height of the Cypress Tree’s root ball, as the tree will settle over time. If planting a screen, dig multiple holes between 4 and 5 feet apart.
Next, find a partner and stand the Cypress Tree vertically in the hole. Backfill the hole with soil and water in alternating dispersals.
If using mulch, add the mulch to the area at this time to about a three inch depth. Water immediately over the mulch area.
Best Soil Type For Cypress Trees
Cypress Trees are able to withstand nutrient poor soils easily. Soils come in a variety of types as defined by the granular components. Clay and silt soils are usually not preferred for most trees, as these soils do not enable the free-flow of oxygen and water. Despite these drawbacks, clay and silt soils can sustain and grow Cypress Trees.
Loam soils, however, are the best for most trees. Loam soils are made up a variety of different particle sizes. This stops the soil from clumping unnecessarily and blocking the transference of water and air. One way to determine the difference is to grasp a handful of the soil and squeeze. If the soil clumps and does not fall apart easily, it is clay. If the soil clumps when squeezed, but then immediately falls apart upon release it is likely silt or sand. If the soil clumps when squeezed and released, but falls apart when touched, it is loam.
Many types of Cypress Trees require considerate water access. For example, the Bald Cypress, which grows throughout the southeastern United States, prefers water-logged plains. However, many of the most popular Cypress Trees are actually drought tolerant.
Irrigation can be effective at providing efficient and sufficient water access to Cypress Trees. The Cypress Tree varieties available at The Tree Center are specifically cultivated to demonstrate drought tolerance. It is most important to water the Cypress Tree immediately after planting. For the first year of establishment, be sure the Cypress receives water once a week.
How to Use Mulch and Fertilizer with Cypress Trees
Many gardeners use mulch and fertilizers in order to create the most complete soil profile. Cypress Trees do not require fertilizer. Mulch, however, can be exceptionally beneficial, as it helps to not only add additional nutrient matter to the soil if naturally-based, but it can also assist in water and oxygen accessibility.
New trees require easy access to water and air; mulch helps to transfer these entities to the plant’s root systems. Cover the area surrounding the Cypress Tree with mulch to a depth of three inches, up to but not including the tree’s trunk. Water the mulch directly. Wood-chip based mulches work best, as these will decompose over time and add nutrient matter to the soil.
Information on Cypress Trees
Landscapers choose to plant Cypress Trees for a variety of reasons. Cypress Trees are effective at creating decadent privacy screens or barriers. These windbreaks are beneficial for blocking out noise, wind, and intrusions. Cypress Trees are also noted for their aesthetic and historical appeal. As one of the first gardened trees, Cypress Trees were used by ancient Greeks in public garden spaces. There are dozens of trees within the Cypress family; however, the major varieties easily planted in the United States are the Leyland Cypress, Italian Cypress, Drought Tolerant Evergreen Cypress, and the Dwarf Hinoki Cypress.
Cypress Tree Varieties and Cultivars
Cypress Trees come in many varieties, though most are moderately-sized trees. Many Cypress Trees prefer heavily wetted areas; however, the trees carried by The Tree Center are primarily drought-tolerant, making them accessible by residents throughout the United States.
The fast-growing Leyland Cypress works well as a privacy screen or ornamental tree. Growing up to 5 feet a year, the Leyland Cypress is a feathery evergreen often planted 6 feet apart to create privacy barriers. The Leyland Cypress can reach up to 60 feet tall, and it spreads out to between 8 and 12 feet.
The Italian Cypress is also noted as a fast-growth tree, reaching between 3 and 5 feet per year in new growth. These trees are tall, narrow, and adaptable, often reaching between 30 and 40 feet tall. They do not grow wide, with a mature width of only 5 feet, making them ideal as accent privacy barriers. Italian Cypresses are often planted along driveways or paths to add a majestic ambience.
Drought Tolerant Evergreen Cypress
Many Cypresses require heavy doses of water; not so for the Drought Tolerant Evergreen. This tree thrives on neglect, and it still manages to create a pleasing oval evergreen conifers. With a unique blue-green coloring, the Drought Tolerant Evergreen Cypress grows well in arid, drier climates of the American southwest.
Dwarf Hinoki Cypress
The Dwarf Hinoki Cypress is used as a low shrub by landscapers searching for a hardy plant that will grow well in poorly lit and water locations. Unlike the familial Cypress Trees, the Dwarf Hinoki Cypress does not require full sun, settling instead for partial shade. Furthermore, the shrub will only reach between 3 and 6 feet tall.
Benefits of Cypress Trees
Gardeners and landscapers searching for a tree to provide a historical and aesthetic ambience will enjoy the Cypress Tree, regardless of the specific species, because the tree has so much to offer. The Tree Center carries drought tolerant Cypress Trees, which will withstand short, temporary droughts.
In return, these trees will provide a unique feathery physical nature that will complement many garden types. Furthermore, the Cypress Tree, grown throughout history, provides planters with a connection to gardeners of a distant past. The Cypress Tree is also an investment; these long-living trees can live for hundreds or thousands of years.
Cypress Tree Concerns
For the most part, Cypress Trees are incredibly adaptable, managing drought and weak soil conditions with ease. Choose the Cypress variety carefully, as some species may require additional support in terms of water access. Cypress Trees are known for being easy-to-grow and manage.