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Hesperocyparis arizonica (Greene) Bartel
Synonym(s): Callitropsis arizonica, Cupressus arizonica, Cupressus arizonica ssp. arizonica, Neocupressus arizonica
USDA Symbol: hear22
Arizona cypress is a graceful, pyramid-shaped tree, 30-40 ft. high (usually taller in the wild) by 15-20 ft. wide. Evergreen tree with conical crown and stout, horizontal branches. Soft-textured, pale, gray-green to blue-green, evergreen foliage is scale-like and flattened against the branchlets; the overall effect is like a braided bullwhip. The rough outer bark of older trees scales off to reveal an inner bark that changes color from tan to plum to red.
Arizona Cypress is often grown for Christmas trees. The durable wood is used locally for fenceposts. As many as 5 varieties, based on minor differences of foliage and bark, have been distinguished.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Tree Leaf Retention: Evergreen Leaf Complexity: Simple Size Notes:
30-40 feet tall, 15-25 feet wide.
Green Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Not Applicable
Bloom Time: Apr , May
Bloom Notes: Flowers inconspicuous.
, UT Native Distribution:
to extreme s. NV,
& n. Mex. Native Habitat:
Hot, dry canyons & stream banks from 3000 to 7000 ft.
Growing ConditionsWater Use:
Low Light Requirement:
Sun Soil Moisture:
Dry CaCO3 Tolerance:
High Cold Tolerant:
Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay Conditions Comments:
Arizona cypress is drought-tolerant, fast-growing and relatively short-lived (30-50 years). It is very widely used as an ornamental and for windbreaks in its native
BenefitUse Ornamental: Attractive, Fast growing, Aromatic
Use Wildlife: Cover, Nesting site
Use Other: Makes a good wind break.
Interesting Foliage: yes
PropagationDescription: Propagate by seed or treated cuttings taken in late fall. Stratified seeds will germinate at 72 degrees.
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: Seeds require cold-moist stratification for one month.
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, CA
Record Last Modified: 2012-09-26
Research By: TWC Staff