Growing any tree from stem cuttings is a form of cloning. Cloning a Leyland cypress is a method of reproducing a true copy from the parent plant. The Leyland cypress is a favorite with Christmas tree growers. Cuttings for cloning should be chosen from parent trees that have the characteristics that appeal to the grower. The stem cuttings, once rooted, will produce a genetically identical tree having the same size and shape as the parent tree.
Fill the 6-inch diameter pot with equal parts of peat moss and sand to within 1 inch of the top rim. Add 1 qt. of water to the potting mix. Allow the excess water to drain from the pot's lower holes.
Cut up to five tender-green stems from the ends of the Leyland cypress limbs. The cuttings should be 6 to 8 inches long. Best cuttings are taken from new growth during the months of May through early July.
Remove the lower 3 inches of leaf growth from the cutting to make a bare stem. Dip the cut end, approximately 2 inches, into the rooting hormone powder.
Insert the pencil into the potting mix to form a hole. Place the cutting into the pencil hole. Firm the soil around the stem cutting. Evenly space all five cuttings into the 6-inch pot.
Set the pot in a well-lit area out of direct sunlight. Keep the cuttings moist throughout the growing season. Test the condition of the rooting process by gently tugging on the stems after three months. If resistance is felt, the cutting is taking root. Remove all cuttings that have dried out and not rooted.
Transplant the rooted cuttings the following spring.