Donna’s Plant of the Month – Hinoki Cypress

— Written By Donna Teasley and last updated by
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Hinoki Cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa), is an upright evergreen with soft needles and a dense growth habit. There are more than 200 cultivars of this plant, from dwarf cultivars growing no more than 12 inches high to 130 foot giants. For landscaping purposes the dwarf cultivars of hinoki cypress are by far the most used of the species.

The dwarf hinoki cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Nana Gracilis’) is probably the most popular of all the hinokis. With its fan-shaped, soft needles, slow growth rate and loose pyramidal shape it makes a great shrub for the home landscape. Reaching a height of six feet and a spread of five feet in about 10 years, this shrub has many uses. It can make a loose hedge as well as a specimen plant. Its compact root system lends itself to foundation plantings. The lace-like foliage is attractive and the dense and dark green needles make this plant a great addition to the landscape. There are gold cultivars also.

Hinokis are low maintenance, thriving in well-drained soil and sun to part shade. Once established they are very drought resistant and seldom fall prey to insects or diseases. Another plus is their resistance to both deer and rabbits. For those who need a good cultivar for a container, Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Nana’ is a very slow grower and is only three feet tall at maturity.

There are many cultivars of this multi-purpose shrub and the gardener who wants to grow the hinoki cypress can surely find a cultivar to suit his needs.

For more information on the Hinoki Cypress visit North Carolina Plant Toolbox.

verdoni hinoki shrub

Verdoni Hinoki

Hinoki Cypress shrub


VIDEO Created by Elizabeth Meyer