The 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 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. It is grown as an ornamental for its bright light blue foliage. Hardy in zones 7-9.
Growing Instructions for the Arizona Cypress
The seeds need to be planted when received or stored in a refrigerator until they are planted. The seeds have a period of dormancy. They can be planted outdoors in the fall or winter for spring germination or they can be cold stratified to simulate winter conditions and to break their dormancy at any time of the year. 1. Soak the seeds in water for 24 hours. 2. Put the seeds in a ziplock bag. 3. Put the bag in the refrigerator and leave it there for 330 days. 4. The seeds like well-drained soil. Prepare a mixture of half potting soil and half sand, perlite or vermiculite. 5. Sow the seeds on the surface of the soil and cover them with a thin layer of soil. 6. Water the soil so that it is moist but not wet. 7. When the seedlings are a few inches tall, they can be transplanted.