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Gardens

Plants: Species

Cypress: Italian Cypress Cupressus sempervirens

FAMILY: CUPRESSACEAE (Cypress Family)

The slender Italian cypress Cupressus sempervirens (pictured on left) is found throughout the Mediterranean region, where it has been grown as an ornamental for thousands of years. The Italian cypress is drought tolerant, and it has the added advantage of being resistant to dust, sleet, and air pollution. It can live to 1,000 years of age and has frequently been used for archeological dating at sites in Italy and Israel. In Rome, the Church of Santa Sabina was built in the 5th century A.D., and the origianl door was made of Italian cypress with intricate carvings illustrating scenes from the Old and New Testaments.