Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Filicoides' / Fernspray Hinoki cypress

Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Filicoides', the Fernspray Hinoki cypress is a large-growing, upright, bushy form, with long, ascending branches that are often sparsely clothed or bare. Foliage is nice, emerald-green in color with brown highlights, and is held in distinctive, flat, fern-like sprays. Always slow growing, and usually gaunt and freakish in all cases.

After 10 years of growth, a mature specimen will measure 6 feet (2 m) tall and 2-thirds as wide, an annual growth rate of 6 to 8 inches (15 - 20 cm).


  • 47 feet (14.3 m) by 4 feet 9 inches (1.4 m) wide in Scorrier, Cornwall, England, measured in 1959
  • 40 feet (12.2 m) tall by 6 feet 9 inches (2.05 m) wide in Endsleigh, Devon, England, measured in 1977
  • 23 (7 m) tall in Aurora, Oregon, measured in 1993. Labeled as 'Compact Filicoides'.

This cultivar originated long ago in Japan. P.F. von Siebold imported the first plants to Leiden, The Netherlands in 1860. It is thought to be relatively uncommon in North America. The name filicoides means fern-like; from Latin: filix = fern, and from Greek: oides = resemblance.

Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Filicoides' in a garden setting in Ohio, USA; Photo from summer 2006.
Photo by Bill Barger
Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Filicoides' — a closeup of foliage detail. Photo taken during winter in Ohio.
Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Filicoides'. Seed cone detail; photo from 2006.
Photo by Scott Beuerlein


Cindy M.

Love the info on fernspray cypress. How to best fertilize? We’ve had our plant 6 - 7 yrs & can’t remember fertilizing it lately! Thx