How to Care for a Leyland Cypress Tree


The Leyland cypress tree grows to 70 feet in height and 20 feet wide, on average, but is known to grow to 100 feet tall. This cypress grows an average of 3 to 4 feet per year with dense branches covered by feathery foliage. The foliage might be dark green or bluish-green with small cones. The Leyland cypress is a popular landscape tree especially when used as a privacy screen on larger properties.

Step 1

Provide enough light for the Leyland cypress tree, which requires full sun---at least six hours of continuous sunlight per day. Prune nearby trees if they are shading the cypress. If you are just planting the cypress, choose a spot that gets full sun, especially in regions that have shorter, cooler summers.

Step 2

Test the soil around the Leyland cypress yearly---preferably in the spring. If the soil test shows no lacking nutrients, fertilize the tree only every three years. If the soil test shows the soil lacking in nutrients, choose a shrub and tree fertilizer based on the missing nutrient.

Step 3

Make sure the soil is well drained. The Leyland cypress tolerates drought well, but the soil should be well draining so as not to drown the tree. If you have a drainage problem, build a French drain to divert excess standing water away from the cypress by digging a 3-foot-deep trench and layering gravel and sand in the trench. Cover the trench with sod.

Step 4

Check for diseases and pests. The Leyland is resistant to verticillium wilt but could still contract it. It is sensitive to pests, but most pests, except the bagworm, tend to leave the tree alone. If you notice a rare disease or pest problem, contact a nursery for the proper fungicide or pesticide. Different pesticides and fungicides work for different maladies.


  • Clemson: Leyland Cypress
  • University of Florida: Leyland Cypress
Keywords: leyland cypress, cypress care, live christmas tree

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Cayden Conor is a family law paralegal who writes on various subjects including dogs, cockatoos and cooking. She has over 15 years of experience as a paralegal, and has been writing professionally for three years. Conor has a paralegal degree and majored in criminology, computer science (programming emphasis) and education.