I have a Leyland cypress that is potted. I bought it when it was nearly 4 ft. and now it is about 7 ft. The pot I have it in is large enough for the tree right now. I need help to move it. My question is, within the last month I have noticed some of the branches near the stalk are taking on a yellowish color and I have found one of the branches actually has turned yellowish and brittle. Could this be a watering issue? If so, I’ll take a core sample from the pot to see what the moisture level is. While in the pot, should it be semi-moist in the bottom?
The Gardener’s Answer
Hi, Shelli: Thank you for your question regarding your Leyland cypress. If it is just one branch that has turned yellow and brittle, I would not be too concerned. If it seems to become more widespread there might be something else going on, but for now just remove the dead foliage and keep an eye on it. It is normal for these evergreens to shed some of their inner foliage this time of year. They are such fast growers that they have to drop some of their foliage in order to put on new growth. I do not think it is a watering issue. Evergreens in containers will need more moisture than they would if they were planted in the ground, so make sure the soil does not go bone dry. Depending on the weather, you may need to water your cypress every other day during the hot summer months. A thin layer of mulch on top of the soil will help retain the moisture. The best way to test for soil moisture is to stick your finger down at least 1 inch into the soil. If it is dry then go ahead and water, but if it is still moist wait another day. Make sure the container it is planted in has plenty of drainage holes.