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Leyland Cypress is a popular, lightning-fast-growing evergreen tree that’s ideal for homeowners who want a privacy screen in a hurry. A row of these beautiful columnar blue-green sentinels will shoot up and expand to give you a feeling of seclusion faster than you can say, “Honey, would you bring me another margarita, please?”, as you relax on your back patio. If a neatly sheared hedge is the look you’re after, Leyland Cypress is great for that, too. With regular pruning, you can maintain it at pretty much any size (and shape) you like. Left unpruned, it can become a large tree, so plan accordingly before unleashing this super-quick grower into your landscape.
The story of the Leyland Cypress takes us back to the chance meeting of two West Coast strangers on an estate in a remote village in England in 1888. The hero of our story: the rugged and picturesque Monterey Cypress, native only to the Monterey Peninsula of California just south of San Francisco. The heroine of our story: the Alaskan Cedar, a beauty native from coastal Alaska to Oregon with pendulous branches clothed in lustrous dark green foliage. The two trees were planted in the same British garden, and love was in the air (in the form of pollen), resulting in six seedlings—the first-ever Leyland Cypress Trees. They were named after the owner of the estate, Christopher J. Leyland.
Leyland Cypress is a hybrid tree that’s distinctly different from either of its parents. Its Monterey Cypress parent often develops a weathered, windswept look in its native haunts on the West Coast, although it becomes more columnar in sheltered spots. Alaskan Cedar is a slow-growing specimen tree with a weeping appearance. Leyland Cypress, on the other hand, has a naturally tight, columnar, upright, formal appearance. Additionally, it exhibits what’s known as “hybrid vigor.” Some plants are greatly improved by mixing up the gene pool, and such hybrids will often grow much faster than their parents, like this one.
How to Grow
Leyland Cypress is more adaptable than its parents, and it’s easy to grow as long as a couple of conditions are met. One requirement is full sun. In shady sites, it will grow more slowly and its foliage may become sparse. Another must is good drainage. Although regular irrigation is important, especially during the first year or two of establishment, this tree shouldn’t sit in water for any length of time, since “wet feet” may lead to fungal disease and death. Leyland Cypress is a superb choice for planting near the seashore, as it is extremely tolerant of salt spray. In fact, it’s one of the most salt-tolerant evergreen trees you can buy!
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Size A Trees:
3' Tall. Grown in our #6 tree container this is a great evergreen that can be used in a variety of ways.
Size B Trees:
5-6' Tall. Grown in our # 15 tree container. This tree is at the height ready to be used as a privacy fence or to put as a centerpiece in your landscape.
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