Cupressus macrocarpa

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Monterey Cypress Cupressus macrocarpa (syn. Callitropsis macrocarpa) is a species of cypress Cupressus native to the Pacific coast of California, around Monterey.

It is a medium-sized evergreen coniferous tree, in the wild growing to 10-20 m tall, the small size due to severe coastal exposure. In cultivation in more sheltered conditions, it has reached much larger sizes, growing to 20-48 m tall.

Some studies have suggested that all the American Cupressus species may be more closely related to junipers Juniperus than they are to European and Asian Cupressus species; this has led to their transfer to a new genus Callitropsis (syn. Xanthocyparis)[1][2]. This is however not yet certain nor widely accepted, and its retention in Cupressus is the most suitable pending further research[3].

Monterey Cypress is commonly grown as an ornamental tree along the Pacific coast of North America and also Australia, New Zealand, and the Atlantic coasts of western Europe. It is also, with Nootka Cypress, one of the parents of the important garden hybrid Leyland Cypress.

References

  1. Little, D. P., Schwarzbach, A. E., Adams, R. P. & Hsieh, C.-F. (2004). The circumscription and phylogenetic relationships of Callitropsis and the newly described genus Xanthocyparis (Cupressaceae). American Journal of Botany 91 (11): 1872–1881.
  2. Little, D. P. (2006). Evolution and circumscription of the true Cypresses. Syst. Bot. 31 (3): 461-480.
  3. Xiang, Q & Li, J. (2005). Derivation of Xanthocyparis and Juniperus from within Cupressus: Evidence from Sequences of nrDNA Internal Transcribed Spacer Region. Harvard Papers in Botany 9 (2): 375-382.
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