Growing Guide of The Lemon Cypress Tree

The Lemon Cypress is a small, familiar evergreen that people may recognize as the chartreuse Christmas trees that seem to show up in every major retail store around the holidays. However, this citrus-looking tree should be considered more than a seasonal plant.

Also commonly known as Goldcrest Monterey Cypress, Cupressus macrocarpa 'Goldcrest' is a variety of Monterey cypress. This versatile conifer can be used as a hedge, specimen, bonsai, or stored in a container on a patio or indoors.

The unique color of the lemon cypress can reproduce the darker greens of other conifers, while the texture can be experienced by placing the shrub next to rocks and fences.

Obviously, lemon cypress gets its name from the light citrus fragrance that the needles express when touched or crushed. This sensory trifecta of sight, smell, and touch makes the tree a perfect candidate for inclusion in a sensory garden.

Lemon cypress care

One of the best things about C. macrocarpa 'Goldcrest' is that it is an easy plant to care for outdoors. The only maintenance necessary will be pruning if you want to reduce its size or annual pruning if you use it as a hedge.


Whether you plan to keep lemon cypress outdoors or as a houseplant, it requires a fair amount of light. It will thrive in full sun or partial shade outdoors or in direct sun indoors for five to six hours a day.

If you keep the plant as a houseplant, too little light will kill the plant quickly.


Planting this tree in very rich soil creates problems. The lemon cypress is adapted to grow in poor, sandy, and well-drained soils, with a low content of organic matter and little fertile.

This infertile soil allows the slow-growing tree to continue its development to match the height of its roots, helping to ensure that the thin, narrow plant is not carried away by the winds.

If you are going to keep the lemon cypress in a container, you should replant it once every three to four years. Take it to a larger pot and give it some fresh soil. Prune your plant roots conservatively to keep growth under control during replanting.


As an outdoor shrub or tree, once established, the lemon cypress needs a little extra watering. To allow the plant to establish itself, water once a week for the first season.

If kept as a houseplant, be sure to water it well once a week, being careful not to let the soil get too dry.

Temperature and humidity

A lemon cypress prefers cool, humid climates. Temperatures above 80 ° F in dry areas will overwhelm the plant, while temperatures below 20 ° F can cause tree damage or death. In colder climates, it is best to protect the tree from cold winds, which will burn the needles. The USDA recommended zones are 7-10.

When used as a houseplant, lemon cypress should be stored in a place with sufficient humidity. Keeping it moist during the winter is vital and will be more difficult when a heater is running or the windows are closed. It may be necessary to use a vaporizer or humidifier to help supplement the ambient humidity.


Fertilizing this shrub is not suggested. The lemon cypress is adapted to thrive in poor, infertile soil conditions. Rich soils will cause rapid and uneven growth and can result in tree instability.


The only regular pruning maintenance required is when lemon cypress is used as a hedge or bonsai. In such cases, this must be done carefully and in a timely manner. This shrub, like most conifers, is not well suited to difficult pruning.

This tree, however, still looks impressive in its natural, upright, untrimmed, slow-growing form.

We hope you enjoy this video about Lemon Cypress indoor care guide:

Source: Garden Answer

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