Floridata Plant Encyclopedia

A Floridata Plant Profile 895 Juniperus squamata

Common Names: singleseed juniper, flaky juniper Family: Cupressaceae (cypress Family)

Juniperus squamata
The Juniperus squamata cultivar 'Meyeri' will grow into a big gnarly shrub up to 20 ft (6.1 m) tall.

Description

Singleseed juniper is a decidedly bluish coniferous evergreen shrub or small tree. Cultivars have been selected to grow as groundcovers, spreading shrubs and small upright trees. Singleseed juniper has stringy exfoliating rusty brown bark that peels in thin flakes. The foliage is silvery bluish or grayish and the individual needles are shaped like little awls, sharply pointed and less than 0.3 inch (0.8 cm) long. The needles are borne in spreading tufts of three, and each has a lighter colored band down its center. Singleseed juniper has distinctively nodding branch tips. The fruits are fleshy, glossy black, berrylike cones about 0.3 inch (0.8 cm) long, ripening in their second year, and each containing a single seed.

Two varieties are recognized. Juniperus squamata var. fargesii is a tree to 60 ft (18.3 m) tall, usually with multiple trunks; the bark peels in long strips and the branch tips are conspicuously pendulous. Variety squamata has several popular cultivars. 'Blue Carpet' makes a fine groundcover; it has bluish gray foliage and gets 8-12 in (20.3-30.5 cm) tall while spreading out 4-5 ft (1.2-1.5 m). 'Blue Star' is an upright, rounded bush to 16 in (4.9 cm) tall and 2 ft (0.6 m) across. 'Meyeri', the commonest cultivar, is a dense shrub, 10-20 ft (3.1-6.1 m) tall and spreading about the same; it has powdery blue needles and the tips of the young shoots arch and nod in the breeze. 'Meyeri' grows into an irregular, somewhat ungainly form, and is usually disfigured by persistent dead twigs and foliage. Some cultivars of J. chinensis and J. procumbens occasionally are labeled as belonging to this species, but they can be distinguished from J. squamata by their cones which contain several seeds, not just one, and they do not have nodding branch tips. Some juniper cultivars in the trade are interspecific hybrids of uncertain provenance.

singleseed juniper
The cultivar 'Meyeri' is distinguished by its blue foliage and nodding branch tips.

Location

Singleseed juniper is native to the Himalayan Mountains in Afghanistan and western China. The various cultivars are popular ornamentals in western Europe.


Culture

Light: Full sun to partial shade. Moisture: Singleseed juniper can tolerate brief droughts. It requires a well-drained soil. Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 - 8. Propagation: The junipers can be difficult to grow from seed, with germination sometimes taking several years. They're easy to start from cuttings, though. Try rooting softwood cuttings in summer with bottom heat under mist, or mature wood cuttings in winter in a cool location.
'Bluestar' singleseed juniper
This variety of singleseed juniper called 'Bluestar' boasts beautiful color, low habit and fine dense texture making it an attractive choice for use in rock gardens and as groundcover.

Usage

The small upright cultivars such as 'Blue Star' are well suited to the rock garden or along a path. The prostrate spreaders make fine evergreen groundcovers. The larger shrubs are used as specimens or anchors for informal hedges.

Features

Most species of juniper - for example, creeping juniper (J. horizontalis), Parson's juniper (J. davurica 'Parsonii') and eastern red cedar (J. virginiana) - have two kinds of leaves: needlelike juvenile leaves and scalelike adult leaves which are closely pressed to the twigs. Singleseed juniper never develops the scalelike adult leaves.

Steve Christman 12/21/00; updated 3/18/04



Master Plant List

Click here to find plants in our Encyclopedia using the Master Plant List grid. Use this widget to search, sort and filter Floridata's plant database to easily locate Plant Profile pages. Use the dropdown menus to filter the grid to display items matching the selected Plant Type and Feature tags.

Plant Type Tags

tree icon
shrub icon
palm
perennial plant icon
aquatic plant icon
cactus and succulents icon
grass icon
vine icon

Feature Tags

Attracts Birds
Attracts butterflies
Attracts Hummingbirds
Edible Plants
Cutting and Arranging
medicinal
for pots and containers
indoors
shade
drought tolerant plants
grows in wet soils
flowers
ornamental fruits
fall color
foliage plants
evergreen
easy to grow plants
fast growing

Site Search

Use Google to search all of the pages on Floridata including the Plant Profile pages




Juniperus species profiled on Floridata:


Juniperus chinensis

( Chinese juniper )

Juniperus conferta

( shore juniper, Japanese shore juniper, Blue Pacifica juniper )

Juniperus davurica

( Parson's juniper, Dahurian juniper )

Juniperus horizontalis

( creeping juniper, trailing juniper, creeping savin juniper, creeping cedar )

Juniperus scopulorum

( Rocky Mountain juniper, western redcedar, Rocky Mountain redcedar )

Juniperus squamata

( singleseed juniper, flaky juniper )

Juniperus virginiana

( eastern redcedar, redcedar, southern redcedar, cedar )

Copyright 2015 Floridata.com LLC