Name: Cypress Tree
Scientific name: Cupressus sempervirens
Flowering period: November - April
Cypress is a coniferous, evergreen tree, native to the Mediterranean and western Asia. It is mostly found in Greece, Cyprus, Asia Minor, Syria, Lebanon and Iran, and is also cultivated as an ornamental throughout southern Europe. Most species are trees that reach a height of 30 meters and have an obelisk/pillar shape. There are few shrub species that are native to wild rocky areas, with spreading branches that do not exceed 7 meters in height.
The bark of the tree is divided into strips, while its small, dark leaves, which acquire scales at an older age, are very dense and cover the small branches. The leaves are seasonally accompanied by small spherical cones, which when fertilized bear seeds.
Usage & History:
Cypress trees are planted in parks, along roads, to create windbreaks, and in reforestation. Its good quality and durable wood is also used in furniture making. Cypress wood has been used in constructions since ancient times, with the Parthenon as a typical example.
The tree even inspired the Greek myth of Cyparissus, a youth from the island of Kea, grandson of Hercules and beloved companion of Apollo. A tame sacred deer was always with him. When one day Cyparissus carelessly killed it with a spear, full of despair, he prayed to the gods to let him die, but to keep his tears flowing eternally. The gods took pity and transformed the young man into a tall cypress tree. The tree with the dark green color became the tree of sorrow and its fruits the crystallized tears of the Cypress. In ancient cultures the cypress tree represented mourning. As a sign of mourning, cypress branches were hung outside doors after the death of a loved one. Christians, because of its form, consider it to connect the earth with the sky.