chamaecyparis lawsoniana

Chamaecyparis sp. – Bonsai BCI

Chamaecyparis sp.

Frequent Identify:

Hinoki or False Cypress

chamaecyparis lawsoniana

Basic Info:

This broad, sweeping, conical-shaped evergreen has sleek, flattened, fern-like branchlets which gently droop at department ideas. Hinoki False cypress reaches 50 to 75 toes in peak with a selection of 10 to 20 toes, has darkish inexperienced foliage, and enticing, shredding, reddish-brown bark which peels off in lengthy slim strips.

The simplest false cypress to maintain alive is the Hinoki cypress, C. obtusa. Many report nice success in rising it, however sadly, it appears to be probably the most tough to maintain in correct bonsai kind as a result of whorling fan sample of the foliage. Boulevard cypress (C. pisifera ‘Boulevard’) and Chamaecyparis thyoides ‘Andelyensis Conica’, Andelyensis cypress, appear to be the varieties which trigger probably the most grief.




Full solar, in all however the hottest climates, is ESSENTIAL. With out correct lighting, decrease and internal branches brown and die, which is a major problem as a result of Chamaecyparis is not going to bud again on previous wooden. Many books advocate placing these timber within the shade, however this appears to be a technique to keep away from having the soil dry out fully (see watering, under).


Zone 5 – 8A. Most Chamaecyparis species are hardy to -10F, however are at risk of die-back from chilly, drying winds. A point of frost/wind safety is suggested. Lesniewicz claims that C. pisifera Plumosa,’ C. pisifera ‘Nana Aurea,’ and C. pisifera ‘ Squarrosa’ will be grown indoors, in a vibrant, ethereal location away from any warmth sources.


Sensitive. Many types, particularly Boulevard/blue moss cypress, are very weak to root rot. Nevertheless, in contrast to most genera that prefer it dry, false-cypresses are likely to drink plenty of water, particularly when in an energetic development section. And Chamaecyparis can by no means be allowed to dry out fully. Additionally, drying winds could cause foliage die-back. The very best technique is to make use of very fast-draining soil, water reasonably, permit it to dry considerably between waterings, and complement watering with frequent misting. Additionally, an older couple within the Buffalo Bonsai Society with some very good Chamaecyparis suggested me to water solely within the morning to early afternoon, to keep away from having the timber stand in water in a single day.


Each two weeks, from early spring to mid autumn. Use Miracid, as Chamaecyparis is a lime-hater. An additional tip from Brent: for blue varieties (Chamaecyparis pisiferaBoulevard, Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Minima Glauca’) water sometimes with 1 teaspoon/gallon epsom salts. This can present added magnesium which turns the foliage an intense blue.

Pruning and wiring:

The most important styling problem for false cypress is the deadly mixture of fast development, die-back from lack of sunshine, and refusal to bud on previous wooden. If Chamaecyparis isn’t pruned continuously, inside and decrease branches will die and by no means develop again, making bonsai upkeep a headache. The tree is greatest formed by fixed pinching of latest foliage – by no means use scissors to prune as foliage browns the place reduce. Hinoki cypress additionally tends to kind awkward whorls of foliage if not correctly pruned. There is a superb article by Kamajiro Yamada in Worldwide Bonsai 1995/No. Three which provides detailed directions accompanied with images of how to do that. Most false cypresses are simple to wire, however branches could take some time to set and should should be re-wired a number of instances to keep away from slicing in to the tree. Will be wired at any time of yr, however as wiring appears to sap the vigouvigorr of the plant, it’s best to attend three months after repotting to wire.


Cuttings will be taken from younger wooden in July or August. Hinoki cypress cuttings will root readily. Will be grown from seed, however wants chilly pre-treatment and should take as much as a yr to germinate. Veneer grafting can be utilized on Hinoki cypress in summer season.


Each two to 4 years in early to mid spring for younger timber, each three to 5 years for older ones. Your soil combine will rely in your situations: fast-draining is the most effective thought for most individuals, however a richer combine is perhaps preferable in extraordinarily sizzling areas to maintain the roots from drying fully. Hinoki cypress roots simply, and should should be repotted each second yr, eradicating as a lot as 1/Three to 1/2 of the basis mass. Keep away from utilizing pots that are too giant, particularly with Boulevard cypress, as this retains them too moist.

Pests and illnesses:

Pests: Juniper scale will be managed by making use of pesticides when the crawlers are energetic. The bagworm webs lifeless foliage and different particles collectively to make a nest. The masking makes the insect tough to manage. The nests will be picked off by hand. Illnesses: Blight could be a drawback on younger crops in nurseries or previous crops in panorama conditions. In younger crops, department ideas flip brown and die again till the entire department or younger tree is killed. Bushes over 5 years previous are much less vulnerable. When older timber in landscapes are affected by tip blight, complete timber are seldom killed. Tip blight can infect timber throughout moist climate. The illness causes sooty pustules on the leaves, bark and cones. Scorch could seem like a illness however is brought on by extreme direct solar, freezing stress, drought or mites.

Some species appropriate for bonsai:

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana: Lawson cypress, Port Orford cedar – neither a cedar nor a cypress, it’s hardy in zones 6-8. Reddish brown bark and vibrant inexperienced foliage with purplish brown cones. There are a number of hundred cultivars of this species.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii Improved’: Ellwood cypress – a slow-growing, bluish shrub with small, tight foliage.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Minima Aurea’: A dwarf cultivar of Port Orford cedar with yellow-green younger foliage.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Minima Glauca’ – A blue dwarf cv. of Port Orford cedar.

Chamaecyparis nootkatensi: Nootka cypress – Brownish-grey bark and thick, darkish inexperienced, drooping foliage. The Chamaecyparis of selection in chilly climates, Thomas claims it’s hardy in zones 5-7, whereas Mitchell says it’s native as far north as Anchorage, Alaska.

Chamaecyparis obtusa: Hinoki cypress – supposedly hardy in zones 5-8, however Brent says to -10F and I’d are likely to imagine him. Has reddish brown bark and darkish inexperienced, fanlike foliage. Hinoki cypress foliage turns reddish within the winter.

Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Blue Feathers’ – very fantastic, aqua inexperienced foliage, extra just like Sawara than Hinoki cypress.

Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Filicoides’: fernspray cypress. Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Kamaeni Hiba’ – a stunning little false cypress, with sleek foliage like ocean spray, tipped with yellow.

Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Kosteri’: Koster cypress.

Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Nana’: dwarf Hinoki cypress, dwarf Japanese false cypress.

Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Nana Gracilis’: Hinoki cypress – Hardy to zone 5. Immature foliage is vibrant yellow.

Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Yatsubusa’: Hinoki cypress .

Chamaecyparis pendula – Has lengthy, threadlike foliage, just like mature juniper foliage. Younger development is tipped yellow- inexperienced.

Chamaecyparis pisifera: Sawara cypress – supposedly hardy in zones 5-8, however I’d stick to -10F. It has reddish-brown bark and pointy foliage paying homage to younger junipers, which make it simpler to model than different Chamaecyparis varieties. Word, nevertheless, that the foliage form on C. pisifera cultivars varies significantly.

Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Boulevard’ (usually referred to as C. pisifera ‘Cyano Veridis’ which is technically incorrect): Boulevard cypress, blue moss cypress – grows extra slowly than different false cypresses. Has a sleek, arching behavior and delicate, blue foliage.

Chamaecyparis pisifera compacta ‘white’ – a dwarf Sawara cypress with distinctly ivory tipped fronds.

Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Filifera’: threadbranch cypress – has drooping, threadlike branches.

Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Nana Aurea’: Sawara cypress. Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Plumosa’: Sawara cypress – mild inexperienced, feathery foliage.

Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Snow’: Sawara cypress – Quick rising, with inexperienced to yellow foliage.

Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘squarrosa’: Sawara cypress.

Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Tsukumo’ – Smooth, darkish inexperienced foliage, extra like Hinoki or Shimpaku juniper than Sawara cypress.

Chamaecyparis thyoides ‘Andelyensis Conica’: Andelyensis Conica cypress, Andelyensis white cedar. Zones 5-8. A dense cone of blue- inexperienced foliage.

Chamaecyparis thyoides ‘Heatherbun’.


Jahn (ed.) “The Simon and Schuster Information to Bonsai” Lesniewicz’s “Bonsai in Your Residence”

Owen’s “Bonsai Identifier”

Resnick’s “Bonsai”

Samson’s “Artistic Artwork of Bonsai”

Tomlinson’s “Full Ebook of Bonsai”

Info on particular person species is from Mitchell’s “American Nature Guides: Bushes,” and Thomas (ed.) “The Hearst Backyard Information to Bushes and Shrubs”

Subject 3, 1995 Worldwide Bonsai, “The Tradition & Styling of Hinoki Cypress Bonsai” by Kamajiro Yamada, and “Creating False-Cypress Bonsai” by Shinji Ogasawara are glorious sources for styling assist.

USDA Truth Sheet ST-156

Compiled by Sabrina Caine Edited by Thomas L. Zane

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