Gowen cypress reproduces exclusively from seed. Mendocino cypress cone production is abundant on dwarfed and mature trees, but is rare or absent on young vigorous trees . Staminate cones are usually first produced when trees are 6 to 7 years old, but have developed on 1- and 2-year-old seedlings of Mendocino cypress and Gowen cypress (Cupressus goveniana ssp. goveniana), respectively [8,27]. Ovulate cones are produced on trees that are 4 years of age or older. The cones require 2 years to mature [1,27], and contain from 90 to 130 seeds [8,27]. The cones of California cyress are closed; they persist on the tree until opened by the heat of a fire or from desiccation due to age [8,26]. Seeds are shed gradually over several months after the cones open . Detached cones will open, but they rarely result in seedling establishment, usually due to lack of a suitable seedbed . Seed dispersal is primarily by wind and rain . Gowen cypress germination rates range from 23 to 53 percent . Seeds require bare mineral soil for germination and establishment. Seedling mortality is high on shaded sites with abundant litter because of damping-off fungi [1,26]. Seedlings are sensitive to excessive moisture .
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