Edinburgh New Philos. J. ser. 2, 1: 293, plate 11. 1855.
Shrubby trees to 12 m; crown broadly conical, dense. Bark rough, furrowed, fibrous. Branchlets comblike, 0.5–1 mm diam. Leaves with conspicuous, pitlike, abaxial gland that produces drop of resin, sometimes glaucous. Pollen cones 2–3 × 2 mm; pollen-sacs 3–5. Seed-cones globose, mostly 1.5–2.5 cm, brown or gray, not glaucous; scales 3–4 pairs, smooth except for erect conic umbos, 2–4 mm. Seeds 2–5 mm, light to medium brown, sometimes slightly glaucous.
Habitat: Chaparral and foothill woodland, often on serpentine
Elevation: 300–850 m
In the inner north Coast Ranges Cupressus macnabiana and C. sargentii produce the only known natural hybrids in Cupressus (L. Lawrence et al. 1975).