JUNIPER

FAMILY: Cupressaceae | GENUS: JUNIPERUS

TYPE
  • Evergreen
  • Shrubs
  • Trees
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Full Sun
WATER
  • Drought Tolerant
  • Moderate Water
  • Regular Water

Plant Details

People plant junipers for two main reasons. First, they're toughthey tolerate drought and almost any soil, and they're hard to kill. Second, they come in many formsground covers, shrubs, columns, or treesand their needlelike foliage may be green, gold, gray, or various shades of blue. That's the good.

On the down side, junipers seem to be the number one choice for landscaping hotels, office buildings, shopping malls, gas stations, and highway medians. Using lots of them can give your yard a distinctly commercial look. But if you don't mind your home resembling a galleria, feel free.

Ground covers. This group includes low, spreading plants from a few inches to a few feet high. It takes a planting several years to fill in completely, so for the first few years, mulch between plants to keep down weeds. You'll see how important this is if you ever have to reach into prickly juniper foliage to pull weeds.

Shrub types. These plants usually grow wider than tall and range from about 2 feet to more than 10 feet tall. Shapes include mounding, gracefully spreading, weeping, and weirdly twisted.

Columnar types. These upright growers have dense, pyramidal to conical shapes and are often used as vertical accents. (Planting them on the corners of your house, though, can make it look like King Arthur's castle.) They grow from about 625 feet tall.

Tree types. These picturesque plants love chalky soil. Spread by birds, they dot the Southern countryside. Single trees become stately. Groups make handsome windbreaks and allees and are classic plants for lining a long driveway.

In many cases, junipers are best known by their selections. Pure species are seldom seen.

ozark white cedar, ashe juniper

juniperus ashei

  • Tree.
  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to south-central U.S. and northern Mexico.
  • Common juniper of Texas Hill Country.
  • Irregular or spherical crown to 20 feet tall and wide.
  • Trunk often divides near the base.
  • Gray-green foliage.
  • Shredding gray bark.
  • Female plants bear blue, - to -inch berries with a waxy sheen.
  • Likes dry, chalky soil.
  • Immune to cedar-apple rust.
  • Pollen of male plants can trigger allergies.

chinese juniper

juniperus chinensis

  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to northeast Asia.

Blue Point

  • Columnar.
  • Broad column to 12 feet tall by 8 feet wide.
  • Dense, blue-green foliage.

HETZ CHINESE JUNIPER

Hetzii(Juniperus chinensis 'Hetzii' )

  • Shrub.
  • Inverted pyramid to 15 feet tall and wide.
  • Blue-gray foliage.
  • Branches spread outward and upward at 45 angle.

Kaizuka

  • ('Torulosa' ).
  • HOLLYWOOD JUNIPER.
  • Shrub.
  • Irregular, upright to 20 feet tall by 10 feet wide.
  • Rich, green foliage with soft texture.
  • Branches have outlandish, twisted appearance.
  • Give it plenty of room.
  • Good in large containers.
  • Tolerates salt spray.
  • Variegated Kaizuka ('Kaizuka Variegata') has foliage splashed with creamy white.

Robusta Green

  • Columnar.
  • Irregular column to 1218 feet tall by 57 feet wide.
  • Brilliant, green, dense foliage.

San Jose

  • Ground cover.
  • Prostrate, dense, and spreading to 2 feet tall by 6 feet or more wide.
  • Dark green foliage.
  • Heavy trunked; slow growing.

Spartan

  • Columnar.
  • Pyramidal to columnar to 20 feet tall by 34 feet wide.
  • Rich green, dense foliage.
  • Fastgrowing, very handsome plant.

juniperus c

  • sargentii.
  • SARGENT CHINESE JUNIPER.
  • Ground cover.
  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Ground hugging, spreading to 2 feet tall by 10 feet wide.
  • Feathery, gray-green or green foliage.
  • Classic bonsai plant.
  • Selections include blue-green 'Glauca' and bright green 'Viridis'.

juniperus davurica 'Parsonii

  • Ground cover.
  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to Asia, Siberia, and possibly Japan.
  • Spreading to 1 feet tall by 8 feet or more wide.
  • Rich sprays of dark green needles on slender branches.
  • One of the best junipers for the Southeast.

creeping juniper

juniperus horizontalis

  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9 unless noted.
  • Native to Canada and northern U.S.

Bar Harbor

  • Ground cover.
  • Ground-hugging, creeping to 1 feet tall by 8 feet or more wide.
  • Fast growing.
  • Feathery, blue-gray foliage turns purple in winter.
  • Tolerates salt spray.

Icee Blue

  • Ground cover.
  • Creeping, very flat to 4 inches tall by 68 feet wide.
  • A marked improvement over 'Wiltonii'; intense silvery and denser foliage.

andorra creeping juniper

Plumosa

  • Ground cover.
  • Creeping to 1 feet tall by 10 feet wide.
  • Plumy foliage is gray-green in summer, plum-purple in winter.
  • Flat branches with upright branchlets.

Prince of Wales

  • Ground cover.
  • Creeping to 8 inches tall by 810 feet wide.
  • Medium green foliage turns purplish in fall.

blue rug creep- ing juniper

Wiltonii

  • Ground cover.
  • Very flat, creeping to 4 inches tall by 810 feet wide.
  • Silver blue foliage.
  • Long, trailing branches set with short, dense branchlets.
  • Like ' Bar Harbor' but tighter; rarely shows limbs.

Yukon Belle

  • Zones US, MS, LS; USDA 6-8.
  • Ground cover.
  • Creeping to 6 inches tall by 68 feet wide.
  • Silvery blue foliage.
  • Extremely cold hardy.

PFITZER JUNIPER

juniperus x pfitzeriana(Juniperus chinensis 'Pfitzeriana' )

  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to northeast Asia.

Armstrong

  • Shrub.
  • Upright, dense to 4 feet tall by 5 feet wide.
  • Lacy, medium green foliage.

Gold Coast

  • Shrub.
  • Compact to 3 feet tall by 5 feet wide.
  • Soft, lacy, golden yellow foliage.

Mint Julep

  • Shrub.
  • Vase shaped to 46 feet tall by 6 feet wide.
  • Mint green foliage.
  • Arching branches.
  • Very attractive.

Pfitzeriana Aurea

  • Shrub.
  • Arching to 34 feet tall by 810 feet wide.
  • Greenish gray foliage; current seasons growth golden yellow.

Pfitzeriana Glauca

  • Shrub.
  • Arching to 56 feet tall by 1015 feet wide.
  • Silvery blue foliage.

Wilhelm Pfitzer

  • ('Pfitzeriana').
  • Shrub.
  • Arching to 56 feet tall by 1520 feet wide.
  • Feathery, gray-green, sharp-needled foliage.

japanese garden juniper

juniperus procumbens

  • Ground cover.
  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to Japan.
  • To 2 feet tall by 1220 feet wide.
  • Feathery yet substantial blue-green foliage on strong branches.

Nana

  • Ground cover.
  • To 1 feet tall by 68 feet wide.
  • Curved branches spreading in all directions.
  • Shorter needles and slower growth than species.
  • Can be staked into picturesque shrub.
  • Good in containers.

SHORE JUNIPER

juniperus rigida conferta(Juniperus conferta)

  • Ground cover.
  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to coastal Japan.
  • Prostrate, creeping to 1 feet tall by 10 feet wide.
  • Bright, soft green needles.
  • Excellent for seashore.
  • Takes sandy soil and salt spray.
  • Blue Pacific is denser, bluer, and more heat tolerant.
  • Emerald Sea is bright green.

savin juniper

juniperus sabina

  • Zones US, MS; USDA 6-7.
  • Native to central and southern Europe to central Asia.

Broadmoor

  • Ground cover.
  • Dense, mounding, and spreading to 23 feet tall by 10 feet wide.
  • Soft, bright green foliage.

Buffalo

  • Ground cover.
  • To 812 inches tall by 8 feet wide.
  • Soft, feathery, bright green foliage.

Tamariscifolia

  • Ground cover.
  • Symmetrically spreading to 1 feet tall by 1012 feet wide.
  • Dense, blue-green foliage.
  • Widely used.

rocky mountain juniper

juniperus scopulorum

  • Zones US, MS; USDA 6-7.
  • Native to western North America.

Blue Arrow

  • Columnar.
  • Very narrow to 1215 feet tall by 2 feet wide.
  • Tight, bright blue foliage.

Blue Creeper

  • Ground cover.
  • Spreading to 2 feet tall by 68 feet wide.
  • Bright blue-green foliage.

Blue Heaven

  • Columnar.
  • Neatly pyramidal to 20 feet high by 6 feet wide.
  • Foliage remains bright blue all year.

Gray Gleam

  • Columnar.
  • Symmetrical to 15 feet tall by 57 feet wide.
  • Silver-gray foliage.
  • Slow grower.
  • Tidy, formal-looking plant.

Pathfinder

  • Columnar.
  • Upright pyramid to 25 feet tall by 12 feet wide.
  • Blue-gray foliage; looser than 'Gray Gleam'.

Skyrocket

  • Columnar.
  • Narrow spire to 1015 feet tall by 12 feet wide.
  • Blue-gray foliage.
  • Good vertical accent.

Tolleson's Blue Weeping'. Shrub. Weeping to 20 feet tall by 10 feet wide.

Witchita Blue

  • Columnar.
  • Broad pyramid to 18 feet tall by 6 feet wide.
  • Bright blue foliage; very striking.

singleseed juniper

juniperus squamata

  • Zones US, MS; USDA 6-7.
  • Native to western China.

Blue Star

  • Shrub.
  • Mounding to 3 feet tall by 5 feet wide.
  • Squat, dense plant with silvery blue, sharp-pointed needles.

Chinese Silver

  • Shrub.
  • Dense pyramid to 7 feet tall by 4 feet wide.
  • Foliage is shiny blue.
  • Red, peeling bark.

Holger

  • Shrub.
  • Dense, spreading to 35 feet tall and wide.
  • Yellow new growth matures to blue-green.

eastern red cedar

juniperus virginiana

  • Tree.
  • Zones US, MS, LS, CS; USDA 6-9.
  • Native to eastern North America.
  • Conical to broadly pyramidal to 4050 feet tall to 1530 feet wide.
  • Picturesque tree with dark green foliage that turns bronze in cold weather.
  • Tolerates drought, poor soil; thrives in limy soil.
  • Many selections sold.
  • Aromatic foliage and wood.
  • Female trees adorned with thousands of bright blue fruit.

Canaertii

  • Tree.
  • Upright pyramid to 20 feet tall.
  • Dark green foliage sets huge amount of blue fruit.

Emerald Sentinal

  • Tree.
  • Upright pyramid to 1525 feet tall by 58 feet wide.
  • Dark green foliage.
  • Useful hedge or screen.

juniperus v

  • siliciola.
  • SOUTHERN RED CEDAR.
  • Native to southern-most U.S. Zones MS, LS, CS, TS; USDA 7-9.
  • Tree.
  • Cone-shaped to 30 feet tall by 20 feet wide.
  • Very similar to the above species, though often more open and wide-spreading.
  • Grows in sand.
  • Frequently planted in rows and used as windbreak.
  • Tolerates seaside conditions.

Junipers take about any kind of soil as long as it is well drained. Wet soil causes root rot and death. Full sun is the rule. Very little trimming is needed if you choose a plant of the right size and shape to fill the allotted space. Deer seldom browse junipers, but the plants are subject to various pests and diseases. Among the most common are bagworms (foliage is stripped), spider mites (yellowing or browning needles with fine webbing present), cedar-apple rust (orange, jellylike galls in foliage), and tip blight (branch tips turn brown in spring).

Search by Plant Name

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Experience our exclusive vacation collection.