Cupressus, Lemon Cypress, Monterey Cypress 'Goldcrest'

Cupressus macrocarpa

Family: Cupressaceae (koo-press-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Cupressus (koo-PRESS-us) (Info)
Species: macrocarpa (ma-kro-KAR-pa) (Info)
Cultivar: Goldcrest
Additional cultivar information:(aka Golden Crest, Lemon Yellow, Wilma Goldcrest)




Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:



over 40 ft. (12 m)


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Pollen may cause allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Unknown - Tell us

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From semi-hardwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Merced, California

San Leandro, California

Union City, California

Valley Center, California

Athens, Georgia

Crofton, Kentucky

Raleigh, North Carolina

Portland, Oregon(7 reports)

Salem, Oregon

Warren, Oregon

El Paso, Texas

South Jordan, Utah

Bainbridge Island, Washington

Brush Prairie, Washington

Sequim, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 15, 2020, Lodewijkp from Zwolle,
Netherlands (Zone 7a) wrote:

Much hardier than the non-cultivar variety. Main difference between goldcrest and the original is the height and foliage colour, goldcrest stays smaller and grows naturally in pyramidal form while the original species can grow into tall trees. If you grow multiple specimens closer together you get a more bushy growth habit. The original species is much hardier when mature due to thick trunk in treeform but usually fails when planted small.

Hardiness varies...some succumb during -8C or -10C and other specimens could tolerate up to -18C. I planted mine in a large tub and survived a night of -18C with significant damage altho it recovered following summer. The following year i used christmas lights (no burlap just lights)and it survived similar temperatures without damage. Bu... read more


On Nov 21, 2018, SimpleSue from Pittsburgh, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

I was just given one of these as a gift and learning how to grow it outside hopefully.
I'm in Pittsburgh, zone 6b.

redhead3kids in Port Alberni, BC, Canada commented here that is growing it with success and said they are zone 6-7.
I thought that was zone 8b ?

Has anyone successfully grown these outside in zone 6b?

Thank you Mogheller for info in Berlin and how the plant survived -10c. That info give me hope that mine will survive in Pittsburgh.


On Nov 11, 2014, redhead3kids from Port Alberni,
Canada wrote:

I bought this plant approx 5 yrs ago and it was about 4 in tall. Planted it outside and it is now about 10 ft tall and beautiful. I live in Port Alberni, BC, Canada and my zone is 6-7. Have never protected it from the cold. It is truly beautiful.


On May 23, 2014, omaz from cairo,
Egypt wrote:

Introduced to Egypt 10 years ago . Sold in many nurseries now , propagated by cuttings . Growth season in our winter ,new foliage beautiful yellowish , very invasive roots detrimental to trees within a 40 yard radius .


On Jan 4, 2013, AZJeff from Sahuarita, AZ (Zone 9a) wrote:

I saw this plant being sold as a living Christmas tree for the holidays. I was attracted to it,for the color and foliage. Well, the soil was getting real dry,so I watered it real well. The foliage was real nice til later on, the tips would get brown,and just dry up and die. I've pinched off all the dead growth. I had it in the house,then I moved it outside to get cooler air and some sun. I thought it got too much sun so I moved it in the shade. Now it's back in the house. The dead growth spoils it's beauty. I live in a desert climate where we have mainly low humidities,so I think that's the problems and issues with this plant for getting brown dried up tips. I wouldn't advise getting this plant if you live in a very arid climate,even if you do water the plant and keep it shaded,as the grow... read more


On Aug 14, 2012, 5Mary5 from London,
United Kingdom wrote:

These are indeed beautiful plants but I live in England where we have small gardens and if a neighbour plants these as a hedge and too near the garden fence then it sterilises any area within 3 feet. so please be a good neighbour and make sure you plant this at least 3/4 feet within your own boundary.


On Jun 21, 2012, ravensnestfarm from Brush Prairie, WA wrote:

I've had this plant for a number of years, subsequent to killing the first one. Arrgh! The thing it taught me is it wants to be quite moist at all times. WAY more water than most plants. Treat it as a marginal if grown as a house plant. A minor dry-out kills it. I have no experience with it planted outside, except as a summer pot plant that comes in for the winter.


On May 15, 2010, BUFFY690 from Prosperity, SC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I have purchased one of these awesome looking plants, I love the scented foilage, it will surely harmonize with my citrus scented geranium collection. I was going to grow in a pot but I think it will most definately go in the ground so it can show off.


On Dec 3, 2007, mantis212 from Roslyn, NY (Zone 7a) wrote:

This is the " Lemon Cypress " that is being sold across the country. I planted one in Stockton CA and one in Long Island NY. I will post the results.


On Jan 27, 2005, Mogheller from Berlin,
Germany wrote:

For me one one of the most beautiful cupressus!

here in Germany most people know this plant, cause its very-very often to see/buy for low price in shops as so called "room-cupress".
but in rooms she is NOT good, cause the air ist to dry and the light is not bright enough most.

99,9% think this plant would destroyed by frost, but it isnt true!

10 years ago i had such a plant in a pot and in winter it was in a glasshouse with radiator. but then the radiator broke, the glasshouse was unopenable for 7 frozwn days/nights down to -10C, but the plant survived without problems!

then i searched a place in my parents garden, planted it out and it was fast growing for 5-6 years, until a virus or fungi or i dont know destroyed it.
... read more