Cupressus  torulosa

William Gordon, The Pinetum, (1858) p.69-71.

No. 14. CUPRESSUS TORULOSA, Don, the Twisted or Bhotan Cypress.
Syn. Cupressus Cashmeriana, Hort.
Nepalensis, Loudon.
pendula, Griffith.
    Leaves, very small, ovate, scale-formed, smooth, regularly and closely imbricated in four rows, or slightly spreading, acute, more distant, much longer, and very glaucous, with a yellow tint on the young plants, but of a more greenish hue, with a tinge of grey on the adult ones. Branches, spreading, alternate, or irregularly placed along the stem; lateral ones short, numerous, mostly in two rows, and slightly bent downwards; branchlets, drooping on each side, and considerably subdivided; from two to six inches long, closely covered by numerous oval-pointed, imbricated, scale-like leaves, arranged in four rows resembling small green cord. Cones, globular, or somewhat oblong, from three-quarters to one inch long, and produced in great abundance in dense clusters, each cone consisting generally of ten scales, of the shape of a shield, with from four to six convex facets, rising into a kind of boss in the centre, which is stiff and woody when ripe, and furnished in the centre with a short, reflected, spiny point. Seeds, small, nearly flat, of a light brown colour, with a narrow wing round the border, and from six to seven under each scale. Seed-leaves only two in number.
    A fine pyramidal tree, with numerous short, slender, horizontal, or sometimes deflected branches to near the ground, and drooping branchlets. It is found in great abundance in Northern India, at elevations of from 4000 to 8000 feet.
    It grows to a great size; trees from ten to fifteen feet or more in girth are common, and one at a place called ‘Urcho,’ in the Kothee State, north of Simla, is said to be six or seven feet in diameter. Major Madden says the Lime Stone Mountains of ‘Nynee Tal’ are covered from 4500 to 6200 feet with clumps of the most stately trees, the height of many of them at least 150 feet, and all as straight as an arrow, with the branches drooping slightly towards the ground, and so arranged as to make the tree appear a perfect cone,—the largest specimen measured by him being 16¾ feet in girth at five feet from the ground, the spread of its branches 24 feet on each side; but about 12 feet is the average girth of the finer specimens at ‘Nynee Tal,’ where the tree is commonly called ‘Raisulla,’ or King Pine. It seems to be unknown as an indigenous tree in North-West Kamaoon, but in South-East Gurhwal it is in abundance at from 7000 to 8000 feet of elevation. It is the ‘Soorui,’ or ‘Name Divine,’ of the Himalayas, and the Weeping Cypress of travellers.
    Timber, white, with a tint of red and yellow; is exceedingly fragrant, and considered equal to that of the Deodar for durability. Bark, reddish brown, peeling off in numerous long stripes, and frequently appears twisted, which is supposed to have suggested its specific name (torulosa). The wood and branches are burnt in sacred rites, as incense, among the Hindoos, both to please the gods, and scare away evil demons.
    It is more or less tender in England, and has the following varieties :—

    This variety differs in having all its parts of a bright glossy green, and rather slenderer than the species.

Syn.             ”             majestica, Knight.                                                   
    This kind differs in nothing from the ordinary form of the species except in its more robust appearance, being much larger in all its parts, and much hardier, and no doubt is the larger kind from the mountains of Cashmere and Nepal.

Syn. Cupressus torulosa elegans, Hort.
religiosa, Knight.
religiosa nana, Hort.
    This variety differs from the species in being very much smaller in all its parts, more compact, and very dwarf.