Italian Cypress Substitute
Florida humidity can cause the temperamental Italian Cypress to suffer with root rot, spider mites, fungus, and cypress canker disease. When you need a unique, eye-catching, easy-to-maintain evergreen substitute, consider the Mast Tree from Palmco.
Palmco serves all of Florida and the contiguous U.S. from our 600-acre nursery is located in Bokeelia on Pine Island, Florida. We offer a wide selection of FF-grade palms, top-quality bamboos, and spectacular ornamental plants.
We assist landscape contractors, architects and developers with everything they need to beautify resorts, golf courses, commercial properties, residential estates and more, by providing large palms and specimen trees throughout the country and worldwide.
About the Mast Tree
Fairly new to Florida grower production, the Mast Tree (Polyalthia longifolia ‘Pendula’) is destined to become a popular landscaping choice.
Botanically, the tree is named Polyalthia longifolia “Pendula.” “Poly” means “many,” “longifolia” means “long-leafed,” and “pendula” means “pendulous” or “dangling.”
In botanical lingo, it’s a tree with many dangling long-leafed branches.
Native to India and Sri Lanka, Mast Trees are excellent substitutes for the Italian Cypress, which seems to dislike Florida’s abundant rain and high humidity. They are fast growing (to 30 to 45 feet) and need space to stretch out (to a full-grown width of 4 to 5 feet).
The tree’s lush foliage ranges from coppery brown when new, to light lime green, to a glossy dark green as the trees age. Leaves remain on the tree in all seasons, almost completely covering the trunk, and the natural color contrast makes a spectacular show when the trees are planted in groups.
Fragrant star-like pale green flowers appear once a year in the spring or summer and typically last for two to three weeks. Due to their color, they are barely noticeable, but attract butterflies and birds.
Mast Trees have very little leaf drop, no pest issues of note, and require little to no maintenance. They prefer well-drained rich clay, loam or sandy soil, will grow in full sun or partial shade, and are drought-tolerant and moderately salt tolerant when mature.
Tall, narrow Mast Trees can be used as tall hedges, privacy screens, noise screens, windbreaks, to line driveways, avenues and walkways, or as architectural accents to frame entryways, soften building corners and vertical edges, and cover vertical drain-pipes. They are also suitable for narrow spaces because they grow quite tall but stay slender.
Mast Trees are an excellent substitute for Italian Cypress when you need a vertical accent for a client’s landscape. They are best-suited to USDA Zones 10a to 11 and are available wholesale from Palmco. In the right location they will make a striking statement, and few others will have them! Call Palmco at (239) 283-1329 to find out how we can meet your design requirements.