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Redcedar, Eastern Juniperus virginiana

Eastern Redcedar - Juniperus virginiana
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Dense pyramid shape excellent for windbreaks and screens. Birds love its berries. Medium green foliage. Likes full sun. Tolerant of most soils. Matures at 40' - 50'. (zones 2-9)

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Zones 2 - 9 Zones 2 - 9
Hardiness Zones 2 - 9
The Eastern Redcedar can be expected to grow in the zones shown in color in the arborday.org zone map. View Map
Evergreen Evergreen
Type of tree
Evergreens
40' - 50' High 40' - 50' High
Mature Height
The Eastern Redcedar grows to be 40' - 50' feet in height.
8' - 20' Spread 8' - 20' Spread
Mature Spread
The Eastern Redcedar has a spread of about 8' - 20' at full maturity.
Medium Growth Medium Growth
Growth Rate
This tree grows at a medium growth rate. More about this.
Full Sun Full Sun
Sun
This redcedar does well in full sun.
Various Soils Various Soils
Soil
The Eastern Redcedar grows in acidic, alkaline, drought tolerant, loamy, moist, rich, sandy, silty loam, well drained, wide range, clay soils.
Columnar Shape Columnar Shape
Shape
This redcedar has columnar, oval, pyramidal shape.
Attributes

The Eastern Redcedar tree is a common sight on road cuts and in fence rows and abandoned fields throughout most of the plains states and eastern United States, especially where limestone soils are present. It is a tree of reddish wood giving off the scent of cedar chests and its crushed berries provide a whiff of the gin they once flavored. Thanks to its tolerance of heat, salt, a wide range of soils and other adverse conditions, Eastern Redcedar is also put to good use on the farm in windbreaks and in city landscapes for hedges, screens, clumps or even as specimen trees.

Description

Dense pyramid shape excellent for windbreaks and screens. Birds love its berries. Medium green foliage. Likes full sun. Tolerant of most soils. Matures at 40' - 50'. (zones 2-9)

Wildlife Value

Eastern Redcedar twigs and foliage are eaten by browsers. Seeds are eaten most extensively by cedar waxwings, a grayish-brown bird.. Evergreen foliage provides nesting and roosting cover for sparrows, robins, mockingbirds, juncos, and warblers.

History/Lore/Use

The Eastern Redcedar is an ancient tree, dating to aboriginal America, where fossil evidence indicates it covered large portions of the continent. The early explorers took note of the tree. Arthur Barlowe and Phillip Amadus were quoted as saying the trees were "the tallest and reddest cedars in the world" when they arrived at Roanoke Island in 1564. Colonial craftsmen lost no time in using the wood from the Eastern Redcedar for furniture and fences as it had superior weathering capability and was easy to work with. The wood was a staple of the pencil industry for over a century until supplies became exhausted and the industry switched to more plentiful western cedars. Birds are very fond of the berries, the Cedar Waxwing taking its name from the tree whose fruit is its favorite food.

Moisture

Can withstand occasional flooding, yet has good drought tolerance.

Leaves

The leaves are evergreen. On new growth and young trees, foliage is needle-like; older foliage is scale-like, with each scale about 1/16th of an inch long and compacted to form rounded or 4-sided branchlets.

Flower Color

Greenish-yellow; nondescript.

Bloom Time

April-May

Fruit Description

Female cones are ovoid, 1/4" across, ripening in one year, abundant in shiny colors of brown to almost blue. Male staminate cones are yellow-brown and borne on separate plants.