Evergreen trees or shrubs with opposite or whorled scalelike sessile leaves, commonly of 2 sorts, those of the young branches linear, often spreading, on the older branches scale-like, closely appressed and overlapping. Cones of 3-6 fleshy coalescent scales, when mature forming a sort of berry, light blue and glaucous.

Fig. 21. Juniperus communis

Fig. 21. Juniperus communis.

Fig. 22. Juniperus horizontalis

Fig. 22. Juniperus horizontalis.

Fig. 23. Juniperus virginiana

Fig. 23. Juniperus virginiana.


Leaves in whorls of 3


J. communis


Leaves mostly opposite

b. Prostrate shrub; cones 6-10 mm. in diameter


J. horizontalis

b. Upright shrub or tree; cones 5-6 mm. in diameter


J. virginiana

1. J. communis L. Common Juniper. A low decumbent shrub (in the var. depressa Pursh) or small tree, 2-10 m. high, with pyramidal or columnar form; bark dark reddish-brown, scaly; leaves thin, straight, 12-21 mm. long, widely spreading, grayish above, sharp-pointed; cones subglobose, 5-10 mm. in diameter. Dry soil, pastures, etc., Greenland to Alaska, south to California, Wyoming, Ohio, and the mountains of Georgia (Fig. 21).

2. J. horizontalis Moench. Creeping Savin. Creeping Juniper. A procumbent, prostrate or creeping shrub; leaves scale-like, sharp-pointed; cones 6-10 mm. in diameter, on a short peduncle. Rocky or sandy banks and bogs, Newfoundland to Alaska, south to Wyoming, Illinois, and New York (Fig. 22).

3. J. virginiana L. Red Cedar. A tree 15-25 m. high (or sometimes only a small tree or shrub), pyramidal in form; bark thin, peeling off in long strips, reddish-brown; leaves mostly opposite, those on the young twigs subulate, spiny-tipped, 4-8 mm. long, those of the older branches scale-like, acute or subacute, closely appressed and overlapping, 4-ranked, causing the twigs to appear quadrangular; cones ("berries") maturing in autumn, light blue, glaucous, about 6 mm. in diameter. Dry woods and barrens, often on limestone outcrops, Florida to Texas, north to New England and Missouri (Fig. 23).