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Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Posted by hafronczak z7NJ (My Page) on
Mon, Aug 1, 05 at 8:41

We moved to our house last year and the previous owners planted a row of Leyland Cypresses next to the driveway. Then another row next to that row (our side yard) which borders one side of our leach field for our septic system and another row at the property line which borders the other side of the leach field. They are about 15 feet tall already and getting very full. I feel claustrophobic! I worry that they will get too large. I am not sure about their root system. They are maybe 3 feet from the driveway. When they get big will they damage our cement driveway? Will they interfere with our septic system? Is it possible to have these taken out by a landscaper and then, can they be replanted elsewhere or will they die? They are growing fast and I need to do something. I know you can trim them, but there are 15 of them and if they need a lot of maintenance, then I'm not sure if we will be able to keep up with it. Help!!!!!!!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Mostly, 'yes'. They will get huge (35 metres is in their reach, unless they get diseased and die first), and will likely damage your drive and leach field.

The only 'no' is to having a landscaper move them - not possible without removing the drive, first. Run a chainsaw along at ground level is the best option.

Resin


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Haf:

This may be the first time that I've agreed with pineresin about Leyland Cypresses.

I have 60 of them, which I keep trimmed to about 15 feet. They are beautiful. Visitors to my backyard nearly always compliment me on them and want to know more about them. I haven't once regretted putting them in. Buuuuuuuut, (that's a very big but) they are a lot of work. I spend about 40 hours, once a year, to keep them in check.

From what I've read, they probably wouldn't be a good fit for your needs. Still, before you fire up the chainsaw, you may want to get quotes on annual professional trimming. If it's affordable for you, think about keeping them. They won't hurt the driveway. It would be best to ask a septic pro to determine exactly how close the nearest lateral is.

Joe


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

They are a lot less work than mowing a lawn...


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by Ron_B USDA 8 WA (My Page) on
    Tue, Aug 2, 05 at 22:41

Lawn clippings can be left on the lawn, hedge clippings have to be hauled away or dumped in a pile elsewhere on the property.

Those who think Leyland is attractive must not have looked at too many conifers. It can be quite surprising how homely the thing is, compared to its relatives. Tree Tam would be a good common name for it.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get full of bugs?

  • Posted by Ron_B USDA 8 WA (My Page) on
    Tue, Aug 2, 05 at 22:44

For another of the tree's possible ways to enhance your property...

Here is a link that might be useful: Attack of the Pods


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

For quick temporary[5-7years]hedging the leyland is the ticket.I have had them for over 7 years and they accomplished a temporary screen I needed while other more desirable conifers and bamboo have matured in my landscape.Now. the leylands will get the buzz cut at ground level.They have served there purpose.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Here's one that got out of hand I photographed in my neighbourhood last year :


(click if you wish to enlarge)

It took 3 days to the tree guy (standing on the top of the tree with his chainsaw) to 'trim' it. The tree is now 3m/10' tall and really looks ugly - but at last the owners of the house behind can enjoy some sun ;-)

Olivier.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by Ron_B USDA 8 WA (My Page) on
    Thu, Aug 4, 05 at 22:05

The house behind is way back there anyway, if the roofs in view are an indication. The Nootka looks more likely to create gloom and litter right next to it. The tree guy may be back later, to attack the Nootka or remove the rest of the Leyland, if the recent operation killed it.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

when is the best time to top this kind a tree??
i was thinking to cut down about a qouater from it.
what are you think?
it is very a tall ,i have 7 of them a long the house


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by bboy z8 WA USA (My Page) on
    Mon, Jan 16, 06 at 0:29

Sound like too much. May not recover, unless these are pretty young and small. If a quarter would amont to yards of growth, you will end up with wrecks--at least initially.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

So let's see if I got this right......When trees get big, they become ugly?

Thnx for clearing that up!

+oM


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

"So let's see if I got this right......When trees get big, they become ugly?"

Leyland Cypresses do, yes, because of disease susceptibility, and forked trunks which split off all too easily in wind or snow.

Resin


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by klavier z4 Bing, z5 Pou (My Page) on
    Mon, Jan 16, 06 at 10:46

I have never seen a full grown conifer I didn't think was attractive, but I have to say any tree planted three feet from a cement driveway will eventually cause damage. Take a look at the side walks in the area and notice how trees manage to push up the sections. We don't plant anything around our leach field. Root systems tend to get larger than you would think. Even if the trees don't cause damage, I highly doubt it is a risk worth taking. Your driveway and leach field are extremely expensive to repair. I personally don't think the trees are worth a $20,000+ hassel, and God forbid soemthing should go wrong, the trees would have to be removed anyway.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

When I think of tree roots pushing up sidewalk blocks, etc. I think of such things as silver maples and American elms. I'm honestly not really sure if the same can be expected from the trees in question here, but again, every time I've seen it happening, which is thousands of times, it's been one of these low-land hardwood species, not a conifer of any kind.

+oM


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Hi +oM,

I've seen cases of driveways broken by Leyland Cypress roots, and also serious subsidence damage (a house wall with a crack nearly 2cm wide). It only happens if the cypresses are very close by, though.

Resin


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Pineresin, I defer to your greater knowledge regarding this plant. Other than things I've read, I really have no experience with it. I believe from your diseas comment, and other things I've seen, that this tree may have been overplanted and is now becoming something of a liability in some locations due to this.

But the trees in the pictures look nice to me, and the mere fact that they are getting large is in no way a detraction. I tend to like large-growing conifers for their own sake and this will always influence my take on some of these issues.

Incidentally, I have two large Thuja in front of my house, nice cinnamon bark and all. My wife has always said that our house would look better without these big things half-blocking the view ( there's that word again!). What she didn't initially understand is that I like the trees better than the house! So there's a little bit of the inner workings of my family for y'all to enjoy........+oM


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by bboy z8 WA USA (My Page) on
    Tue, Jan 17, 06 at 15:12

Yours and a million others. I know a couple where the wife wants him to cut down an Acer davidii that is over on one end, almost around the corner so they have more view. Their place is already like a ship, with a salt water panorama that distracts from most of the garden. Even when you are inside the house, the view dominates, like it was a movie theatre instead of a dwelling. This is a frequent scenario here along Puget Sound. With global warming and exploding growth here it's going to look like California someday, with scalped, parched view neighborhoods staring across the Sound at each other.

Leyland is distinctively inelegant, visit a collection with it and related conifers growing near one another and you might see this better. There's more to how a tree looks than being green. For another that doesn't discolor much in winter maybe one could try Juniperus virginiana, for example. This looks much better out here, but we don't have winters beyond its hardiness or pest problems with it.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by lkz5ia z5 west iowa (My Page) on
    Tue, Jan 17, 06 at 19:58

Has anyone ever heard of leyland cypress surving zone 5 climate? I see its typically listed down to zone 6, but was wondering if anyone has success lower than that?


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Fine to about -10f, so perhaps marginal in well drained 5b, but I wouldn't bother.

There are lots of trees worth zone-pushing. Leyland isn't IMHO.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

I have a question and I know this comes down to opinion but....
My husband and I purchased 17 acres out in the country, our street has houses on 3 acre lots, there are 20 on one side and 20 on the other. We are at the very end. The person that built our house put our house over an acre back from the street. Which means when we step out our front door and look up the street all we see are the back and back yards of every house on our side of the street. We planted two rows of Leyland Cypress (100) of them along our property line to block out the view. I went by the advice of several websites that said to plant them 6 feet apart in offsetting rows. So I have 2 rows of 50. I am now wondering if this is going to be ok in 10 year as I do not want to "trim" or hinder their shape. I believe I have enough room and the line runs east/west so I don't think it would block out to much sun since it is near the edge of the 17 acres. Here is a link to the picture of the location of the trees.
Please let me know what you think.
Thanks,
Aimee


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Hey Aimee, that line looks like two rows of Alberta Spruce to me! I think Fred Sanford could have spaced them better or Lamont for that matter! Then again, I'm looking from about 1000 feet back!

Looks like a chainsaw massacre to me! lol

I think the point here is that they split sidewalks, become enormous as the reasons being that people plant them much too close. Your's appears to be the case (Aimee) from my vantage point. They also no matter what as Resin makes clear, are messy trees.

No problem, glad to be of any help. Take care:(

Dax


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

I guess the aphorism 'different strokes for different folks' is true. When I think of all the trees I could plant on 17 acres I think there would be precious few leyland cypress when I was done.

A couple are ok. But 100? You can block off the view with a variety of trees. You didnt say exactly where you are, but cedrus is hardy in Z8. And since there are more than 100 different species of pines surely one or two would work for you. Don't be impatient and select leyland because it's fast. Try to envisage what this will look like in decade.

I'd run over those puny trees with a lawn mower and go get something intersting. At the very least thin them out and put a couple decent trees in.

I don;t want to sound like Im against leylands entirely, but there are so many outstanding things out there......


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by bboy z8 WA USA (My Page) on
    Wed, May 2, 07 at 22:46

The generic appearance of the selections from this cross is remarkable. If somebody had been aiming for blandness, they would have been highly successful.

The effect produced does vary with the climate. In some areas cypress family conifers, including this one all grown narrow and compact shapes, almost as though sheared.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

At least the trees are a long, long, ways from the home!

You probably spaced them well. I saw the stakes without the trees.

As I pondered earlier, I thought, this is a case for the very reasons that cultivars are used. Like this guy told me, Leylands are being cultivated now for slower growth, etc -

I just don't know what to say anymore. A tree is a tree.

Good luck with your nice screen. It will be fine for you and indeed serve all purposes.

Kindest Regards to the Extreme -

Dax


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Dax,
Thank you for your opinion, I was a little worried at first, but yes they are far away from any house, there is at least 110' from where the tree line is to either houses on both sides. The tree line at the back is already 25-30' tall. I guess if in time they get to big I can always cut them down and thin them out.

Thanks,
Aimee


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Aimee,
I live in a neighborhood where the lots are 2-5 acres. Several neighbors have leylands planted just like you do, only theirs are about 30 feet tall. I asked one lady how she liked them and she said she just loves them. They are absolutely gorgeous. I often see them and wish they were in my yard. I think you'll be happy you planted them.
Enjoy your leylands,
anita_47


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Leyland Cypress -- I want my Leylands to become full but not necessarily tall. Can I cut the leader at the top of the tree to accomplish this?


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

I had 3 of these many years ago as payment for a gardening job i did. They were cute little yellow trees that before I knew it became huge towering things that were a real b*tch to prune. Having said that i'd love to see a big one that has had the room to mature into a proper tree,and surely there are other garden conifers that grow as fast?


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

So Larry, what ever happened to yours? Did you remove them, or did they die, or do you still have them? If so, how large are they now? Believe me, I am seriously thinking of commiting the "crime" of planting these things myself, due to some very unruly new neighbors that I really need to screen out ASAP...LOL! I am just hesitant though because of all I've read about them.

PS - You said yours were yellow? What type are those? I don't think I've ever seen yellow ones... they might have a different growth habit than the green ones I am looking at. ?


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

I planted 6 (5' tall) leyland cypress this spring (2007)about 3' apart. I would like to move them farther apart. Is this the best time (early winter) to move them or wait til early spring 2008? Thanks. fdc.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Depends on what zone you are in. Here in Z8 anytime between now and next March/April is fine.
My wife had about a dozen planted 6' apart 3-4 yrs. ago. The trees are over 12' high and have grown into each other.
From what I've seen, 12-15' apart is probably a better distance.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Sorry this is so long...

We will be purchasing a home this month and the neighbor next to us has planted Leyland Cypress 2 to 3 ft apart around his entire property line, except for in the immediate front yard. He has planted them either on our property line or right inside his. I know these get huge so even if the roots don't damage our driveway (which is 4 to 5 feet from the property line) the branches will interfere with out driveway.

The neighborhood we are purchasing in has a Homeowner's Association with a committee for structure control. Trees and shrubs are considered "structures". We are not sure if the neighbor received permission to plant these in the manner that he did, but do you think if we provide the Association with growth pattern info and Bag Worm disease info that we could possibly have them make the neighbor remove them?

Thanks in advance for your help!


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by beng z6b western MD (My Page) on
    Tue, Dec 4, 07 at 11:04

To give a general impression of size & growth rate of Leylands in good conditions, look at my below link.

Here is a link that might be useful: 30 yr old Leylands


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Lots of maintenance, shallow root system, they get huge, love water. In my opinion, I would run.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

I have 9 Leyland planted about 3' apart about 5 years ago - they have definitely gotten out of hand. The north side is bare branches, and the south side has blocked the sun from the middle of the tree. I had the tops trimmed three times, but never trimmed the side.

My question: Is it possible to cut them back now that they have gotten into this bad shape? If I keep them trimmed, will they eventually grow small branches near the trunk, or is the opportunity forever gone?

Thanks

Gene


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Hi.Yellow Leylandi does exist.I have one called 'Castlewellan gold' and there is another one called 'Gold Rider'.There are probably more yellow/gold selections.T.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

"My question: Is it possible to cut them back now that they have gotten into this bad shape? If I keep them trimmed, will they eventually grow small branches near the trunk, or is the opportunity forever gone?"

No, you can't. It is as you suspected forever gone. They don't re-grow from bare wood like e.g. yews do.

Resin


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Our neighbor, who is a horticultural disaster area, just planted a row of these very near the property line. Our yards are just 1/3 acre. I have a BS in Ornamental Horticulture, and thoroughly research everything that we are putting in the yard if I have no experience with it. As suspected this has ruined our relationship as neighbors. I told her that anything that comes over the property line will be pruned off, even if I end up hiring someone to do it. I can only hope that we have a drought this summer and she doesn't water. We live in a high wind area too...these aren't supposed to be here. Now I can't even look the woman in the eye. She doesn't trust the plot surveys done in the neighborhood but won't pay for a resurvey. I am just sick about this situation. I worry about it when trying to get to sleep at night. She tells me that we are going to have problems when I start pruning them...I think that we already have problems ever since the day she planted them.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Are you in one of the areas where Leyland Cypresses are dying off extensively from Seiridium canker? If yes, find an infected tree, prune it with your clippers, and then straight after, start pruning the neighbour's trees, even just snipping a few tips off the sides. Very naughty, but it'll work ;-)

Resin


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Yikes, I like your thinking Resin! It looks like that canker is just working its way toward us. Hopefully for my sake it arrives here quickly. I have never been a fan of fast growing shallow rooted trees, espescially on small properties. It seems that she is a city girl trying to be countryfied, doesn't want any neighbors, those leylands should close her right in. I am sure that they will make me very claustrophobic though. Looks like the last one is planted about 3 or 4 feet from the property line, so it will be a year or two until they start on our property.


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

OH MY GOD ,I have a small house and a small yard and a large built in cement pool that takes up most of the back yard. In the past 5 yrs we have planted more and more (18 green giants) and (12 lelands ) around the perimeter of the property for privacy and winter color. Some are 10 ft tall and some are only 6 or 7 ft. and from what I have read I think my whole body is in absolute shock! I might have to run and throw up! AM I IN REAL TROUBLE ????? P.S. (I chose that user name because it's my dogs name, and easy to remember!)


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Lots of good comments in here and not to hijack this but I just finished our new home and looking for something full that I can plant about 3' from house corners between hoise and sidewalk. Something that I can keep prunned @ about 10' tall. Love the look of the leyland but after reading here wondering if its a good idea and what are some better options. The house has a block foundation which sounds like is not a good idea for leylands even if they have small root system. I'm also wanting to plant them @ the corners of a back deck that is 10' away from house. The deck is about 5' high so wanted something that would grow tall enough to provide some shade and windscreen on the deck. We are on a hill and do have some higher winds. Any advice?


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

You'd be better off with yews. Slower to start and reach the desired size, but vastly easier to keep to that size when they get there.

Resin


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

Taxus x media 'Hicksii' and Taxus x media 'Flushing' are good yew's.

Dax


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

I've pretty much chopped off at the ground a row of about 6 Leylands that were about 8.5 feet high each. Does anyboyd have any ideas on how to get the root systems out? Or is that a ridiculous undertaking?

John


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

No need to bother, they won't sprout from the stumps. Just let them decay in place.

Resin


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

john.. if you wanted to dig them out.. you should have left 3 foot trunks to aid in removal ...

on my 5 acres.. all stumps are left to rot..

ken


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

  • Posted by botann z8 SEof Seattle (My Page) on
    Fri, May 13, 11 at 13:16

8 1/2 ft. tall is pretty easy to dig out.....or leave.
I would have pulled them out with my truck.
I leave large stumps to decay in the ground. A little topsoil on the stump and some Sedums works also. I have a compost pile on one. Adding a little fertilizer once in awhile helps the process along.
Mike


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RE: Leyland Cypress - will they get out of hand?

what kind of fertilizing if any do they need?


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