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Cupressus macrocarpa Hartw. ex Gord.
Synonyms: Cupressus macrocarpa
USDA Symbol: cuma2
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
An artistic, horizontally-branched tree growing 30-50 ft., sometimes taller. Conical in youth, the tree becomes broad and spreading with age. Medium-sized evergreen tree with large cones and with symmetrical crown when young or where protected; often becoming irregular and flat-topped when exposed to high winds. Soft-textured, dark-green needles are scale-like and flattened against the branchlets; the overall effect is like a braided bullwhip.
The gnarled, picturesque Monterey Cypresses growing on sea cliffs are a favorite photographic subject. The 2 native groves are protected within Point Lobos Reserve and Del Monte Forest at Point Cypress. It is widely planted as an ornamental, hedge, and windbreak along the California coastline and grown in forest plantations for timber in South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Tree Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Brown
Bloom Notes: Pollen cones and seed cones.
CA Native Distribution:
Monterey Peninsula, CA Native Habitat:
Exposed headland & dry places USDA Native Status: L48(N), PR(I)
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement:
Sun Soil Description:
Well-drained soil. Conditions Comments:
Tremendously susceptible to a canker that kills the tree,
especially if it is planted away from cool, coastal breezes. Tolerant of salt spray. Older trees are drought-tolerant.
PropagationDescription: Stratified seeds will germinate at 72 degrees. The percent of viable seed is often low.
Seed Collection: Most cypresses have seratiunous cones that can hang on the trees for several years without opening. Cone should be collected by cutting them from the limbs. They can be opened by boiling for 30-60 seconds.
Seed Treatment: Cool-moist stratify for 30 days at 34 degrees.
Commercially Avail: yes
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Santa Barbara Botanic Garden
- Santa Barbara, CANative Seed Network
- Corvallis, OR
Recommended Species Lists
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Record Modified: 2012-09-26
Research By: TWC Staff