Keeping a Ellwoodii (???) in a pot

It’s definitely meant to be an outdoor plant not a houseplant. You can TRY keeping it as a houseplant for a while longer but I would not count on it to be happy or have a long lifespan.
If you’re going to keep it potted, I’d suggest you pot it on now but DO NOT FERTILIZE. First because you should never fertilize a stressed or damaged plant, and second because the extra soil it will be put into in the larger pot will likely contain a worthwhile amount of nutrients for it already.
Unfortunately they do not have a great sense of humor about drying out; the parts that are brown now are a goner, but hopefully there is enough left in good condition that it can grow onwards ok. It “wants” to become a decent-sized shrub, so as long as the roots are not too damaged, it has some reasonable chance of outgrowing early loss of branches/needles.
I can’t grow them (not hardy here) but my parents in PA had one; they like part shade or open/dappled all-day shade and reasonably moisture-retentive soil that does not get soggy but does not dry out. Do not do well with lotsa wind. If you plant them where they’re happy though they are nice low-maintenance neat tidy-looking plants.
Good luck, have fun,

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ detail (11/01/2012, London)

Position: Full sun to partial shade

Flowering period: N/A

Soil: Well drained, moist

Eventual Height: 8m

Eventual Spread: 2.5m

Hardiness: 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b

Family: Cupressaceae

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ is a slow growing, evergreen, columnar shrub/ tree. The blue/ green leaves are needle like, opposite, with a scaly texture, up to 5mm in length and are produced on flattened shoots. The branches of the plant are upright and erect. The bark of the plant is red/ brown. The seed cones are globose, 7-14 mm in diameter, with 6 to 10 scales, initially green becoming brown with age.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ is commonly known as Lawson Cypress ‘Ellwoodii’. The species, Chamaecyparis lawsoniana, is native to western United States and was introduced into the UK by collectors working for the Lawson and Son nursery of Edinburgh in 1854. Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ was discovered as a naturally occurring seedling in Swanmore Park, in Bishop’s Waltham, UK and was first described in 1929.

The etymological root of the binomial name Chamaecyparis is derived from the Greek chamea ’dwarf’ and kupeiros the ancient Greek name for the Cypress (ironically this is not a dwarf tree). Lawsoniana is named after the Scottish nursery that discovered tree and brought it to the UK. Ellwoodii is derived from the gardener at Swanmore Park, Elwood.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ (11/01/2012, London)

The landscape architect may find useful Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ useful as an evergreen hedge or screening plant, particularly in shady locations. It may also be of use as a vertical accent plant.

Ecologically Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ is of little value to wildlife.

The Royal Horticultural Society has given Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ their prestigious Award of Garden Merit in 1993.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ prefers moist, well-drained soils. It will tolerate most pH of soil although it prefers slightly acid soils.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ requires little maintenance. If being maintained as a hedge it should be trimmed twice a year.

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ (Lawson’s cypress ‘Ellwoodii’)

Botanical name

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’

Other names

Lawson’s cypress ‘Ellwoodii’


Chamaecyparis Chamaecyparis

Variety or Cultivar

‘Ellwoodii’ _ ‘Ellwoodii’ is a fairly slow-growing large evergreen shrub of columnar habit, with grey-green to blue-green, semi-juvenile foliage in short soft sprays.




Narrowly columnar


RHS AGM (Award of Garden Merit)

Create your free Shoot garden

Create your free SHOOT garden and make a record of the plants in your garden.

Add your own photos, notes, get monthly email reminders on how to care for your plants, and connect with other gardeners. Get started now.


Blue, Dark-green, Grey-green in All seasons

How to care

Watch out for

Specific pests

Aphids , Juniper scale , Shoot-boring moths

Specific diseases

Honey fungus , Phytophthora root diseases

General care


No pruning required. If formed into a shape, such as a hedge, will need trimming twice a year.

Get access to monthly care advice

Create a free SHOOT account and get instant access to expert care advice for this and other plants in your garden.

You’ll also receive handy monthly email reminders of what needs doing. Create your free account.

Where to grow

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ (Lawson’s cypress ‘Ellwoodii’) will reach a height of 8m and a spread of 2.5m after 20-50 years.

Suggested uses

Architectural, City, Hedging/Screens, Low Maintenance, Foliage only


Plant in moist but well-drained soil. Can tolerate chalk soils, but prefers slightly acidic soil.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained, Well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Neutral


North, South, East, West


Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

USDA zones

Zone 9, Zone 8, Zone 7, Zone 6, Zone 5, Zone 4

Defra’s Risk register #1

Plant name

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ (Lawson’s cypress ‘Ellwoodii’)

Common pest name

Scientific pest name

Lamprodila festiva



Current status in UK


Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low – 5 is very high)

Impact (1 is very low – 5 is very high)

General biosecurity comments

Beetle that is native to Europe; whose larvae damage certain ornamental conifer species. Absent in the UK; so industry should source plants carefully and monitor for its presence.

Defra’s Risk register #2

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ (Lawson’s cypress ‘Ellwoodii’)

Cypress twig; borer

Argyresthia cupressella


Present (Widespread)

Likelihood to spread in UK (1 is very low – 5 is very high)

Has spread following introduction; little evidence of significant damage. Stakeholder groups may wish to monitor.

Defra’s Risk register #3

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Ellwoodii’ (Lawson’s cypress ‘Ellwoodii’)

Pine wilt disease; Pine wood nematode

Bursaphelenchus xylophilus



Nematode pest has caused extensive damage in Portugal and areas outside of Europe; EU project assessing risk of pest to northern Europe. Subject to EU emergency measures. Awareness raising needed wrt risk of entry via vectors that have been recently intercepted (May; June; 2013).

About this section

Our plants are under greater threat than ever before. There is increasing movement of plants and other material traded from an increasing variety of sources. This increases the chances of exotic pests arriving with imported goods and travellers, as well as by natural means. Shoot is working with Defra to help members to do their part in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive risks.

Traveling or importing plants? Please read “Don’t risk it” advice here

Suspected outbreak?

Date updated: 7th March 2019 For more information visit:

Lawson False Cypress, Port Orford Cedar ‘Ellwoodii’





Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Grown for foliage


Foliage Color:



10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)


8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 °C (-20 °F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 °C (-15 °F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 °C (-10 °F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 °C (-5 °F)

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)

Where to Grow:

Can be grown as an annual



Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown – Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown – Tell us

Bloom Time:


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)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Seed Collecting:

Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds

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


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Dracut, Massachusetts

Water Mill, New York

Cleveland, Ohio

Collinwood, Tennessee

South Jordan, Utah

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *