Help identify amazing Californian tree!

When I was on holiday in the Venice Beach/ Marina Del Rey area of Los Angeles I saw an amazing conifer tree/large shrub, that I have never seen in the British Isles. It was quite popular and seemed to be in a lot of gardens in the area. I've tried searching the Web but it's near impossible to find anything with out a name.
The plant was a light green/yellow colour.The specimens I saw were about 2-3m (6-10ft) high and the same distance spread.I didn't get a very good look at the trees but there didn't seem to be much of a trunk visible.Now my powers of description are not the most impressive, so please bear with me, but the single most identifiable feature of the plant, its amazing crown, can only be described as being like "a fire blowing the wind, but frozen still!"
What I mean is imagine a fire with its flames flicking and being drawn out by the wind but instead of flames think of beautiful light green ferny foliage-quite amazing.My initial thought was that it was some small variant or cultivar of the Monterey Cypress but that's just pure guess work.
One final clue, on the Jay Leno show there are some plants in the set, in with the 'scenic view', well, right behind Jay there are two plants, one is some kind of Aloe or Agave but the other is what looks like a very young or small version of the plant I am talking about (not as wind swept looking though!).
Please, any help would be much appreciated.Thanks Alan. email: flywalk(at)eircom(dot)net
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Sounds like you are describing Hollywood juniper, Juniperus chinensis 'Torulosa'. I don't remember them as light green yellow but rather as a rich deep green. Maybe you are seeing the variegated form known as J.c. 'Corymbosa Variegata' . Sunset Western garden book lists it as a creamy yellow. Google a pic or two and let me know if this is the one you are talking about...
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elizabeth, Baton Rouge, LA
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Elizabeth , you are a star! You have made my day, my week even! Thats the tree.Thank you thank you and thank you.(Newsgroups are just the best!!!) Alan

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