Cypress Keep
What is a Keep?
In medieval times, each castle had an inner stronghold to hold safe the most important possessions of the realm, which was called a "keep." From this ancient origin comes our English verb, "to keep" which is defined as "to protect, guard, take care of, watch over, tend, shelter, support, and maintain in good condition." Cypress Keep maintains this philosophy with a mission of keeping your information and your animals safe. We hope we can be of service to you!
Who are We?
Cypress Keep was established in 1998 in Plant City by the husband and wife team of John Porter and Erika Matulich. John has an extensive background in Information Technology and real estate, while Erika has a doctorate in marketing and additional degrees and certifications in animal care and ranch management. Both share their love of animals, especially their horses and ferrets. Both are heavily involved in carriage driving.  Find out more by clicking on John or Erika's links
The Cypress Keep Facility
The facility itself sits on 50 acres conveniently located near Interstate-4 in Florida. A barn houses horses, carriages, and cannons. The land includes 20 shaded paddocks, a 40x80m dressage arena, plenty of shade, permanent obstacles, and  pond. The remainder of the property has additional pasture land and a 30-acre cypress preserve, home to numerous endangered species including fox squirrels, sandhill cranes, red-headed woodpeckers, and waterfowl. Guests can enjoy the pool in a screened lanai complete with Wi-Fi, fishing from the pond, and watching the wildlife. Additionally, guests can take advantage of numerous riding and driving clinics hosted by a variety of experienced instructors.  Find out more by taking a facility tour.
The Cypress Keep Crest and Heraldry
The crest for Cypress Keep symbolizes what we are all about. The shield is topped by a series of three leaping ferrets. Members of the weasel family (weasels, martens, ermines, stoats, fischers, and ferrets) have been used in heraldry to symbolize many important characteristics. The white weasel, or ermine, symbolizes purity. This is based on the legend that this small white mammal preferred death to defilement. A leaping marten represents one who brings good news and the vanguard of spring.  Weasels in general represent an opponent that is undefeatable, with tremendous courage and competitive spirit. The cypress tree has been used in heraldry to symbolize eternal life.
Cypress Keep Logo

The castle tower, or "keep" symbolizes a steadfast individual, defense, and keeping the home and lands in safety. The horse signifies readiness to act for one's king and country or a readiness for duty. It is also a symbol of speed, intellect, and virility.The colors of the shield are based in gold (or) and green (vert). In heraldry, gold is a symbol of  Understanding, Respect, Virtue, Majesty, and Generosity. Green is a symbol of Freedom, Beauty, Joy, Health, and Hope.