How to Grow Tall Leyland Cypress


The Leyland cypress is a statuesque evergreen that can reach mature heights up to 50 feet. This rapidly growing tree adapts quickly to most soil types and maintains an average growth of about 4 feet per year. The tree has a natural pyramidal shape and produces dense, bluish-green foliage. The vigorously growing Leyland cypress adapts well to hard pruning, is drought tolerant and makes an excellent selection for privacy screens and windbreakers.

Step 1

Select a fertile, well-drained planting location for the Leyland cypress. Plant where the cypress will receive a full day of direct sunlight and ensure that the location provides ample space for growth.

Step 2

Dig a hole that is at least twice the width and depth of the root system. Plant multiple trees about 10 to 12 feet apart. Plant privacy screens about 4 to 8 feet apart.

Step 3

Position the Leyland in the center of the hole and gently spread the roots out. Fill the hole with soil and press the soil firmly around the tree to secure its position. Irrigate to remove potential air pockets and promote a good establishment.

Step 4

Irrigate the Leyland cypress about once every two weeks. Provide the tree with a deep irrigation so that the water reaches about 10 to 12 inches below the surface. Allow the Leyland to dry out between each waterings. Adjust the irrigation schedule accordingly for periods of drought and rainfall.

Step 5

Protect the soil moisture levels of the Leyland. Apply a 3- to 4-inch layer of mulch around the diameter of the tree. Keep the mulch about 1 foot from the trunk of the tree to prevent root rot.

Step 6

Feed the Leyland cypress a balanced, slow release fertilizer, such as a 20-20-20 or 10-10-10 combination. Choose a combination such as an 18-6-10 combination for sandy soils. Feed the Leyland cypress in the early spring, just before the growing season begins and again in the mid-summer months. Apply the fertilizer evenly around the drip line of the tree. Keep the fertilizer at least 1 foot from the trunk to prevent root burn. Irrigate the fertilizer deeply into the soil. Follow the fertilizer label for application amounts.

Things You'll Need

  • Fertilizer
  • Shovel


  • Bugwood: Propagation and Care of Leyland Cypress as Christmas Trees
  • University of Georgia Extension: Preventing Problems with Leyland Cypress
  • Floridata: Cupressocyparis Leylandii
Keywords: Leyland cypress care, growing Leyland cypress, Christmas tree care

About this Author

Charmayne Smith is a business professional and freelance writer. She has worked in management for successful organizations since 1994. Smith draws on her business background to write articles, and her work has appeared in a variety of online outlets. She holds a degree in business from Cleveland State University.