Growing false cypress in pots may be a good idea if you have picked out a dwarf variety. Otherwise, this particular evergreen is likely to struggle as its roots outgrow the pot size. Dwarf varieties can thrive in a pot as long as they are well watered and transplanted to a bigger pot every few years. False cypress is not recommended for hanging baskets, as it would dry out easily and likely outgrow the hanging basket size.
Planting False Cypress in Pots
Planting false cypress in a container should be done in the spring, so that it has time to acclimate before winter arrives. The best location for this particular evergreen would be in part sun/part shade. The soil should be kept relatively moist, as containers dry out more quickly than the ground does.
A large, deep container is necessary for false cypress, even dwarf varieties, as it is a larger evergreen. Drainage holes in the pot are essential to prevent boggy soil that would rot the roots. It would be best to plant false cypress in a non-porous container that doesn’t lose water quickly, such as concrete or wood. Terracotta planters are too porous and can crack during cold weather.
Best Soil for False Cypress in Pots
Potting mix that has slow-release, weak fertilizer added is recommended. Leave a few inches at the top of the pot for watering. A light application of compost can be added at the top of the soil to conserve moisture.
Caring for False Cypress in Planters
As a general rule, containers dry out more quickly than plants in the ground. In addition, false cypress develops an extensive root system that can quickly outgrow its container. Make sure to size up the container every few years so the shrub does not become root bound.
Watering False Cypress in Pots
False cypress should be deeply watered once to twice weekly, in order for its roots to develop properly. This is especially important during the first few years of life. Watering can be done less frequently during rainy weather or if the soil feels moist to the touch.
Fertilizing False Cypress in Pots
Fertilizer will keep the plant healthy when confined to a pot. Watering slowly leaches nutrients from the potting soil over time, depriving the plant of essential nutrition. Consider buying a potting mix that has a low level of added fertilizer. Add compost or mulch yearly to rejuvenate the nutrients within the planting mix.
Winter Care for False Cypress in Pots
In late fall, water the pot well and add a layer of compost to prepare false cypress for winter. If planted in a weather-resistant pot, such as a concrete planter, it can be left outside all winter. If the plant is in a pot that’s susceptible to cracking, it should be stored in a frost-free area.
Growing False Cypress Indoors
Only dwarf false cypress can be grown inside as they’re naturally smaller. The plant does not need to go dormant during the winter, as it’s an evergreen. The plant can be placed in a cool, sunny window, making sure it gets a few hours of direct sun each day. The evergreen should be kept evenly moist, not too dry or wet in order to maintain vitality. Once the temperatures warm up, bring your false cypress back outside, so it receives enough sunlight exposure.