Lemon Cypress Care: How To Care For Lemon Cypress Outdoors And Inside

Lemon Cypress Care: How To Care For Lemon Cypress Outdoors And Inside

By: Teo Spengler

The lemon cypress tree, also called Goldcrest after its cultivar, is a variety of Monterey cypress. It gets its common name from the powerful strong lemon scent that its branches exude if you brush against them or crush their foliage. You can start growing lemon cypress trees (Cupressus macrocarpa ‘Goldcrest’) indoors or outside. Lemon cypress care is not difficult if you know some basic rules.

Lemon Cypress Trees

Lemon cypress trees come in two sizes: small and smaller. Grown outdoors in their natural habitat, the trees can grow to 16 feet (5 m.) tall. This is quite small for a cypress.

The dwarf lemon cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa ‘Goldcrest Wilma’) is the better choice for a houseplant. This small tree usually does not grow taller than 3 feet (91 cm.), making it perfect for indoor containers.

The tree has many admirers, thanks to its green-yellow needle-like foliage, conical growth pattern and bright fresh citrus smell. If you are thinking of growing lemon cypress, you’ll need to understand basic rules of lemon cypress care.

Lemon Cypress Care Outdoors

In general, growing lemon cypress is not difficult. The trees require well-draining soil, but are not picky about whether it is loamy, sandy or chalky. They also accept acidic, neutral or alkaline soil.

If you are growing lemon cypress in your backyard, you’ll need to learn about care for lemon cypress outdoors. They thrive in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 7 through 10. Lemon cypress trees cannot survive shade, so you’ll need to plant your outdoor tree in a sunny spot.

And don’t neglect irrigation, especially immediately after planting. During the tree’s first growing season, you’ll need to water twice a week. Watering is always an important part of care for lemon cypress outdoors. After the first year, water whenever the soil is dry.

In spring, it’s time to feed the tree. Apply a standard, slow-release 20-20-20 fertilizer before new growth appears in the spring.

Lemon Cypress Houseplant Care

If you decide to start growing lemon cypress trees indoors as houseplants, remember that they do best with cool indoor temperatures. Keep your thermostat in the low 60’s F. (15-16 C.) during winter.

Perhaps the most difficult part of lemon cypress houseplant care is ensuring sufficient light. Select a window that provides good sunlight and turn the container regularly to give each side a turn. The houseplant requires 6 to 8 hours of direct sun.

Don’t forget water – essential for lemon cypress houseplant care. They won’t forgive you if you don’t give them drenching once a week – you’ll see brown needles appear. Water whenever the soil is dry.

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Care of a Lemon Cypress Tree

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The lemon cypress (Hesperocyparis macrocarpa) is a conical-shaped evergreen tree with bright-yellow foliage. Lemon cypress care is fairly low maintenance, and you get the benefits of a lovely lemon scent. You will sometimes see this evergreen referred to as 'Goldcrest' after its cultivar, which is a variety of Monterey cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa). These plants grow well outdoors in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 7 through 10.

According to the CalPoly Urban Forest Ecosystems Institute, there are a few other names for this attractive, small tree. It is in the family Cupressaceae and is sometimes referred to in literature and by nurseries as Cupressus macrocarpa or Cupressus lambertiana. It is native to the Monterey, California coastal area and is sometimes considered invasive in that area. My Garden Guide says it is occasionally called lemon pine.


How to Grow Lemon Cypress Trees

The lemon cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa) is a shrub native to California. This tree enjoys warm climates, lots of sunshine and good, moist soil. These beautiful evergreens can be grown both indoors or outdoors. The lemon cypress forms a triangular shape on its own but you can prune it to maintain a smaller size to grow in pots. Lemon cypress trees produce a wonderful lemon scent and grow well in USDA zones 7 through 10, with zone 8 being ideal.

Test the soil where you will be planting your tree. A lemon cypress can handle soils of almost any type but you still want to take measures to ensure your tree will get the best start possible. Sandy soil in a location suitable for good water drainage is best. The soil ideally should have a pH balance from 5.6 to 8.5.

  • The lemon cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa) is a shrub native to California.
  • The lemon cypress forms a triangular shape on its own but you can prune it to maintain a smaller size to grow in pots.

Plant the lemon cypress in an area that receives full sun at least four hours per day. Depending on environmental factors such as the level of humidity in your area, you may need to water your cypress regularly. Feel the soil daily with your finger to check for moisture. If the top soil is dry and doesn’t leave a trace amount of moisture on your fingers, you will need to adjust your watering schedule accordingly.

Fertilize the lemon cypress no more than on a monthly basis. Too much fertilizer will damage the plant and cause its foliage to wither. Periodically add extra soil around the tree to encourage growth.

  • Plant the lemon cypress in an area that receives full sun at least four hours per day.
  • Depending on environmental factors such as the level of humidity in your area, you may need to water your cypress regularly.

Spray the lemon cypress with a pesticide at the start of the spring season to avoid infestations. Aphids are a particular problem for the lemon cypress and will ruin it quickly. Make sure the pesticide is designed to target aphids.

If you would like to grow the lemon cypress indoors make sure you place the pot in a sunny location away from air vents that pose a risk of drying out the cypress.

Cypress trees are good as natural fences. Apply mulch around the base to hold in the moisture content for longer periods of time.

Be sure to keep the cypress well-trimmed, particularly near the ground, so that fresh water can easily reach the root system.


Lemon Cypress Care

Lemon Cypress Trees
Cupressus macrocarpa (‘Goldcrest’ cypress)

In our region, lemon cypress trees are not hardy outdoors year-round. Indoors, keep lemon cypress where they will get the maximum amount of natural light. A south-facing window would be adequate.

They can certainly come outdoors in the spring and summer. Not only is this a good idea, it’s a great idea! They make phenomenal container plants. On their own, or with annual flowers planted in with them, they make a statement.

Lemon cypresses are also a natural choice for fairy gardens. In the miniature world, it becomes a giant evergreen tree. Use with other sun-loving plants.

Keep soil moist, but not wet. Lemon cypress can be fed every 2 weeks during the growing season with a general plant food, and once a month in the cold months indoors.

Prune lemon cypress by snipping the ends of branches to keep it’s natural conical shape. This may cause ends to brown a bit, but they’ll recover quickly.


Why is my lemon cypress dying?

We suspect that the yellow foliage is perfectly normal, as the leaves do turn yellow, ergo, the name 'Goldcrest. ' In terms of the amount of sun that is appropriate, here are the Growing Conditions from our webpage on that plant. We consider "sun" to be 6 hours or more of sun a day.

Likewise, how big do lemon cypress trees get? 16 feet

Furthermore, how do you care for a lemon cypress plant indoors?

LIGHT: Indoors, Lemon Cypress should be close to a window where it will receive at least 6-8 hours a day of direct sun. TEMPERATURE: Plants prefer cooler temperatures of 55-65°F. Water when the top 1-2 inches of potting mix is dry to the touch. Be sure not to over water, which can lead to problems with root rot.

How do you know if a cypress tree is dying?

How to Know If a Cypress Is Dead

  1. Examine the Cypress tree's bark. If the bark has a brittle texture and is falling off in large chunks, the Cypress tree might be dead.
  2. Look at the tree's limbs.
  3. Break off one of the branches at the bottom of the tree.
  4. Examine the needles of the Cypress Tree.
  5. Examine the tree trunk for large cracks.


Lemon Cypress Tree Benefits

The presence of flavonoids in cypress leaves gives them antithrombotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, analgesic, antiseptic, and antimicrobial properties.

On the other hand, the tannins contained in its cones and foliage help it to coagulate, they are astringent and vasoconstrictive. Useful to avoid skin infections, heal wounds, varicose veins, and ulcers, palliate acne, excess sweating, and seborrhea.

Inhalations of the oil taken from this tree and next to hot water, relieves colds, asthma, coughs, bronchitis, sinusitis, and pharyngitis. It is also used in the cosmetic industry to make shaving lotions, perfumes, or colognes.

Lemon Cypress in a pot.

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How tall does lemon cypress grow?

Besides, how fast do lemon cypress trees grow?

Although it prefers full sun, it can tolerate some light shade. It is not fussy about soil as long as it is well drained with a pH of 6.6 to 7.5. It will grow to 6-8ft in 10 years with a width of just 1-2ft, having a narrow columnar habit.

Furthermore, how tall do lemon scented conifers grow? Lemon Cypress Trees. Lemon cypress trees come in two sizes: small and smaller. Grown outdoors in their natural habitat, the trees can grow to 16 feet tall.

Secondly, why is my lemon cypress turning yellow?

We suspect that the yellow foliage is perfectly normal, as the leaves do turn yellow, ergo, the name 'Goldcrest. ' In terms of the amount of sun that is appropriate, here are the Growing Conditions from our webpage on that plant. We consider "sun" to be 6 hours or more of sun a day.

How do you prune a dwarf lemon cypress?

Use sharp pruning shears to remove the sucker branches and the errant branches that are growing in the wrong direction or making it difficult to fertilize the tree. Since lemon cypress has a conical habit, trim the tree as per its natural shape. Trimming should be done every week during the summer.


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