This evergreen conifer, the form of which varies from pyramidal to sometimes rounded, reaches a height of 10 to 20 m. It is indigenous to the southwest of the USA, principally Arizona, and Central America. It is found naturally on dry, sterile, rocky mountain slopes with poor soils and on valley sides. The colour of the scale-like foliage ranges from light green to silvery blue. The branches are dense and horizontal to the stem. Young branches have a cherry-red bark; the older bark is deeply furrowed and dark brown. Tolerant of full sun, heat and wind, with a moderate growth rate, this tree is drought-resistant when established, but thrives with a thorough soaking every month or so. It is not recommended for soils with a high water table. Sometimes planted as a windbreak, C. arizonica becomes open and unkempt as it matures, and is thus less effective as a barrier. It is also susceptible to insect attack, such as cypress bark beetle, when older or under stress. Subject to leaf scorch when grown as an ornamental in an exposed location. Often planted for a woodland or forest effect in parks, it is also useful as a space definer. Not often seen in Arriyadh, the Arizona Cypress generally requires little maintenance.