I’m craving a Cream Ball

Some people have personal trainers or personal bankers. Me, I’ve got a personal baker. All I have to do is call with a special request an in no time, I can have, in my possession, any of a number of delicious treats that would cause my personal health care specialist great alarm if she knew what I was eating. Sometimes I think my wife and my doctor are in a conspiracy to make my culinary life dull and tasteless. Fortunately, my personal baker has a very high ethical standard so I can trust that any of our transactions are kept on the strictest code of confidentiality.

My wife was beginning to become suspicious the other day when she walked in on a conversation I was having with my personal baker. Honest, I was innocently talking with her about a great conifer for her front garden called, ‘Cream Ball.’ With a name like that, you can understand my wife’s suspicion.

Chamaecyparis pisifera 'Cream Ball'
Great for the patio or deck in a container or featured in the garden, Chamaecyparis pisifera 'Cream Ball' is sure to add good taste to the garden.

Chamaecyparis pisifera ‘Cream Ball’ is a fantastic little conifer. This creamy colored little puff has very finely textured foliage that, depending on its environment, will have light green foliage tipped with light yellow or if grown in partial shade, it will appear more of a bluish-green with near white tips. Either way, this slow-growing Japanese False Cypress is a real delicacy for the garden, large or small.

‘Cream Ball’ is also a great choice for the container garden. When young, its slow growth rate and fine, brightly colored foliage will make a great accent when planted with other dwarf and miniature conifers and companions. As it gains some size, ‘Cream Ball’ will make a grand specimen on the deck or patio. Keeping it small is quite easy though, simply lightly shear the foliage in May or June with a good sharp set of grass shears. ‘Cream Ball’ looks great maintained in a ball shape, but since it sports fine textured foliage, it has potential to be used to create topiary for either garden or patio. ‘Cream Ball’ is great frozen too, rated at USDA Zone 4 hardiness, it can survive temperatures to -30°F.

Perhaps I can trade a nice ‘Cream Ball’ for some of my personal baker’s famous mini-cheesecakes. Then we both can benefit from growing this great little conifer.

Conifer Lover

2 thoughts on “I’m craving a Cream Ball

  1. I really enjoy your posts and refer to your archives frequently. By the way, I added the Taylor’s Sunburst to my collection a couple weeks ago and am excited to see it do its thing this spring!I planted it in front of a trompenburg japanese maple which in turn is backed up by a large norway spruce.
    Awhile back you mentioned in a response to me that japanese maples were being crossed with pseudosieboldianas… I have been unable to find any info in this regard… are you aware of any links on the web? Also… I know that the korean maples can be subject to viruses which can kill large portions of the plant in short order… any thoughts on that with regard to the upcoming crosses? Thanks, Larry


    1. Hi Larry –
      The hybridization of the japanese maples (Acer palmatum) and korean maple (Acer pseudosieboldianum) is very new and there is not likely going to be much information available about them yet. I just spoke with my propagator friend at Iseli that has been heading up the process. He wanted to emphasize that part of the long-term evaluation process is not only selecting plants with desirable asthetic features, but plants with proven durability including: hardiness, adaptability to various environmental conditions, resistance to pests and disease, etc.

      One of the new cultivars, A. ps. ‘North Wind’ is being shipped for further evaluation in test gardens all over the USA. This one in particular looks very promising. Remember the hybridization and evaluation process is very time consuming. Although there may be a few plants making it out to independant garden centers in the near future, I may have allowed my excitment to get ahead of the plants becomming largely available anytime soon.

      As I learn more, I’ll make an update here on the blog.



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