Leyland cypress (Cupressocyparis leylandii) definitely prefers full sun in order to thrive and grow well. This evergreen tree is known for its fast growth rate, dense foliage, and tall and slender shape. However, when planted in shady areas where it doesn’t receive enough sunlight, it can struggle and exhibit some undesirable characteristics.
When Leyland cypress is planted in shade, it tends to rapidly thin out and shed its lower branches. This is because the tree is trying to reach for more sunlight by redirecting its energy towards growing upwards rather than focusing on maintaining lower branches. As a result, the lower parts of the tree become sparser and less full, which can affect its overall aesthetic appeal.
In my personal experience, I have observed Leyland cypress trees planted in partially shaded areas, and they indeed displayed thinning and shedding of lower branches. The trees appeared more elongated and top-heavy, with a noticeable lack of foliage towards the lower portion. This can create an imbalance in the tree’s structure and detract from its natural beauty.
It is important to note that Leyland cypress is a sun-loving tree, and its growth and overall health are significantly enhanced when it receives full sun exposure. When planted in an area with ample sunlight, Leyland cypress trees tend to maintain a more compact and dense form with foliage extending all the way to the ground.
To ensure the best growth and appearance for Leyland cypress, it is recommended to plant them in locations where they can receive at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight each day. This will allow the tree to photosynthesize effectively, produce sufficient energy, and maintain a healthy and attractive appearance.
Leyland cypress does not do well in shade and prefers full sun to thrive. When planted in shaded areas, the tree rapidly thins out and sheds lower branches as it tries to reach for more sunlight. To ensure optimal growth and beauty, it is best to provide Leyland cypress with ample direct sunlight exposure.