When it comes to effective privacy screens, Leyland Cypresses mean business! This popular tree’s rapid growth ability makes it one of the most frequently planted selections on the market today. In favorable conditions, it grows 3-5 feet annually! The foliage fills in quite nicely as well. Consequently, when spaced appropriately, expect the Leyland Cypress to form a particularly solid wall, impenetrable to the eye. Furthermore, evergreen foliage means that these trees won’t let you down all year long!
A naturally columnar growth habit means that the Leyland Cypress is perfect for anyone looking for a low-maintenance windbreak or screen. In addition, they excel at dampening street noise and will also filter out dust particles and pollution.
Feathery green foliage lays flat on individual branches. is reliable and appears somewhat fluffy in the landscape. This soft texture truly comes through visually once nearing mature heights of 40-60 feet tall and 20 feet wide.
The Leyland Cypress is drought tolerant when established. Additionally, they are considered to be deer tolerant as their rapid growth makes them difficult for deer to damage in the long-run. However, young plants can still fall victim to hungry deer in the winter. They are also good for coastal exposure, due to their high salt tolerance.
Leyland Cypresses can be pruned to maintain a desired size and shape, however, the rapid growth habit makes this somewhat difficult to keep up with.
Leyland Cypress Care
Hardy from USDA Zones 6-10.
Plant in Full Sun for best results.
Leyland Cypresses are tolerant of most soil types, even clay. However, well-draining soil will help ensure your plant avoids root-rot.
Water frequently after planting. This will help your Leyland Cypress to develop deep roots and allow it to support rapid growth.
Fertilize in early spring before new growth. Use a balanced fertilizer for newly planted Leyland Cypress. Once approaching maturity, use a high-nitrogen fertilizer, such as 18-8-8.
Leyland Cypress Spacing Recommendations
The Leyland Cypress is a tricky one when it comes to spacing. Plant them too close and you’ll have a quick hedge or screen, but as they grow older, they can damage each other. 8-10 feet apart is generally the best practice for a privacy hedge or privacy screen. However, if you want them to grow freely and to their maximum height, 20-25 feet apart is more appropriate.
Check out another fast-growing tree, the Green Giant Arborvitae.
Check out a PBM Post on Planting Hedges and Screens