Chamaecyparis pisifera 'Squarrosa'
Moss Sawara Cypress
kam-e-SIP-a-ris pi-SIF-er -a
Chamaecyparis pisifera f. squarrosa
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon:
- Conifer, evergreen tree, open conical, densely twiggy, becomes irregularly fluffy, rapid growing, a tree may gain 1.5 ft (1.6 m) per year and in 10 years reach 12-18 feet (4 - 6 m) tall, in time to 30-65 ft (10-20 m) high. Leaves are needle-like, opposite pairs, flat, 6 mm long, stand out 45-90 degrees from the stem; foliage very feathery, soft to touch, silver-gray-green. The dead brown twigs in the interior are unsightly.
- Hardy to USDA Zone 4 Introduced from Japan in 1843 by Von Siebold.
There are several cultivars that are related or similar to ‘Squarrosa’, but there seems to be a good deal of confusion on the names.
- ‘Squarrosa Aurea’ - outer yellow leaves against greenish-blue inner leaves, dwarf, slow growing to a rounded, slightly upright plant, to about 3 ft (0.9 m) in 10 years.
- ‘Squarrosa Intermedia’ - a bluish, semi-dwarf form, produces long shoots and needs trimming.
- ‘Squarrosa Lutea’ - sulfur-yellow foliage, grows slowly into an irregular globe, eventually 3-4 ft (0.9-1.2 m).
- ‘Squarrosa Minima’ - miniature globe-shaped form, less than 1 ft (30 cm) in 10 years, olive-green foliage.
- ‘Squarrosa Sulphurea’ - sulfur-yellow foliage, especially in spring, globe shaped shrub, dense.
- squarrosa: from the Latin meaning rough, with reference to the scaly leaves which spread outward.
- Oregon State Univ. campus: northwest corner of Women's Building (two large trees).