Home | Blog | Planning | Garden Care | Evergreens | Deciduous | Flower Beds | Plant List | Site Map |
Facebook Like With Thumbs Up spacer Twitter Bird Logo spacer

Cypress Family - Trees And Shrubs

The Cypress family of evergreen trees and shrubs have unique long skinny leaves. Their leaves are similar in color. Most of the trees and shrubs have variegated tones of yellow and green. This plant family can grow in many different geographic climates. Most do well in zones four through eight in the United States. They like full sun but can take part shade. Their branches and leaves represent a free style even though they are considered an upright form.

I have used many different varieties in client's landscape and gardens. Think about the landscaping on your own property. This colorful family can act as a focal point, or compliment other evergreen and deciduous plant specimens.


Leyland Cypress

The Leyland Cypress is the largest member of the family. It is also one of the most popular privacy trees. The Leylands are fast growers and will grow three to four feet a year. They can reach anywhere from 30 to 70 feet tall, and fifteen to twenty feet wide. Plant seven to ten feet apart.

The Leyland can be planted in a straight row, or you can stagger them. Compliment shrubs placed near the Leylands are: evergreen Cleyera, Osmanthus Tea Olive, Indian Hawthorn, or any kind of Holly. A nice touch is to add some some smaller leaf evergreens or a few annual shrubs around any member of the Cypress family.

Carolina Sapphire

Carolina Sapphire

The Carolina Sapphire, also called Arizona Cypress, is another large member. This tree can grow twenty to thirty feet tall and four to six feet wide. The teal color tones set the Sapphire apart from other family members. After a rain storm, their long skinny leaves glisten and have a sparkling look to them. You can top this tree to keep the height under control.

The Carolina Sapphire provides great privacy. Plant these trees seven to ten feet apart. Companion plants to the Carolina Sapphire: a deciduous Winged Euonymus, evergreen Rhododendron, variegated Privet Ligustrum, or a Wintergreen Barberry.

Green Thread

Green Thread Cypress

The Green Thread has more of a solid color leaf. It will grow six to eight feet tall, and three to five feet wide. The Green Thread will thrive in zones four through eight and will take clay, sandy, or acid based soil.

This Shrub looks delightful next to any type of evergreen Nandina, deep green Curly Leaf Ligustrum, Sky Pencil Holly, or deciduous Little Princess.



The Fernspray is a rich variegated plant. This is a unique specimen of the Cypress family. Fernspray is a slow grower and will reach four to six feet high and three to four feet wide. The branches resemble the look and feel of an oriental garden.

The shrub should be planted at least three to four feet apart. Try the Fernspray as a show plant and accent it with softer leaf shrubs such as Soft Touch Holly, Globosa Nana, Azalea, or a Pieris Japonica.

Lemon Thread

Lemon Thread Cypress

The Lemon Thread is similar in size to the Green Thread. The lemon represents its name with long variegated needle like leaves in dominant yellow tones. Herbee likes to make this shrub a focal point, surrounded by Blue Owl Juniper, one or two Burning Bushes, and a Dwarf Hemlock.

This is a great shrub in the winter as the thickness allows birds to stay warm. An established Lemon Thread can be home to many different bird species during the winter. It's a sure winner in any landscape garden.


Mop Cypress

The Mop Cypress is a smaller version of a Lemon Thread. It grows three to four feet high and three to four feet wide. The texture of the leaves truly reminds you of a mop. This is one of the most popular plants in the southeastern United States, zones five through eight.

The Mop looks fantastic next to a Ruby Loropetalum, Indian Hawthorn, Globe Arborvitae, or any solid color rich shrub. Fire Power Nandina turns red in the winter, and the Mop and Fire Power compliment each other throughout the colder months.

Dwarf Hinoki

Dwarf Hinoki Cypress

The Dwarf Hinoki is one of the smaller members of the family. This shrub will grow three to four feet high and two to three feet wide. The branches are shaped in a pyramid form. The color is a solid green and grows great in zones four through eight.

Some great options are to put the Dwarf Hinoki in a rock garden, on a slope or bank, or around a decorative pond or swimming pool. This dwarf shrub creates a great accent around some evergreen variegated shrubs.

Variegated Dwarf Hinoki

Variegated Dwarf Hinoki Cypress

The Variegated Dwarf Hinoki has the same characteristics, except for variegated leaves. Both types of Hinoki will show off their texture and color if planted in the front part of a landscape bed.

These two specimens are nice to put in the middle of a large planter. Put a dwarf shrub in the middle of the planter and add some ivy. The ivy will drape over the edges. Many of these smaller species look good around a deck or patio.

Herbee's Pick

Leylands are fast growers!

Herbee Greenthumb

Other Articles You Might Be Interested In.

Dogwood --- Barberry Shrub

Outdoor Features --- Other Evergreen Plants Besides Cypress

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box.

Facebook Like With Thumbs Up

Twitter Bird Logo

[?]Subscribe To This Site
  • follow us in feedly
  • Add to My Yahoo!
  • Subscribe with Bloglines

top of the page

Copyright© 2015 - 2017
No photos or materials can be reprinted without the permission of this web site.