Since the discovery of Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Boulevard’ as a sport (a naturally-occurring mutation) of the species in 1934, it has become one of the most popular of the Sawara Cypress cultivars. Although the species can grow to 36m (120ft) tall, as a patio plant, C. p. ‘Boulevard’ will have a tolerably slow growth rate, and will remain compact for many years; given a free root-run in the garden, it has been known to reach 6m (19ft) tall, but on average, it will grow to around 2m (6ft) tall and 1m (3ft) wide in ten years.
Chamaecyparis bear two types of leaf: the small, pointed juvenile foliage and the small, scaly mature leaves. Many of the smaller cultivars produce only the juvenile leaves, and C. p. ‘Boulevard’ is no exception. The soft foliage gives the bush its characteristic shaggy appearance. When combined with the attractive conical shape and the aromatic, distinctive blue foliage, this makes an excellent plant for the patio.
Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Boulevard’ is fully frost-tolerant, but will soon become battered-looking if planted where it is exposed to any cold and desiccating winds.
Although both sun and shade are tolerated, the rich, steely blue of the foliage intensifies if this conifer is grown in light shade.
Plants in containers should be watered thoroughly, then left until thesurface dries before the next thorough watering.
Chamaccyparis pisifera ‘Boulevard’ needs no additional humidity: if the conifer is planted out of any drying winds, the foliage will remain fresh and healthy.
Top-dress each Spring, or use a tree and shrub fertilizer (low in nitrogen) monthly in Summer; always apply the feed to a well-watered plant.
Grow in a free-draining, loam-based compost, adding up to a third by volume of horticultural grit if necessary. Repot pot-bound plants; large pot-grown plants may be difficult to repot and should be top-dressed in Spring.
A favourite place for C. p. Bfr ‘Boulevard’ is on each side of the front door; if the light is restricted on one side – perhaps by the house itself -rotate the plants regularly to maintain a balanced shape.
Honey Fungus: By growing this conifer in a container, it removes all possibility of an attack by Honey Fungus. This incurable infection of thecan kill the plant.
Root death: Conifers in pots are liable to root death through drought; this is most common in Winter when the rootball may freeze or if, in an attempt to prevent the rootball from freezing, the compost is kept too dry. Try to keep a balance between the two extremes.