Eastern Redcedar – Juniperus viginiana

Eastern redcedar is native to Missouri where it typically occurs on limestone bluffs and glades, wood margins, fields, pastures and fence rows throughout the state except for the southeastern lowlands. It is a broadly conical, sometimes columnar, dense, evergreen conifer with horizontal branching that typically grows to 30-65’ tall.

Gray to reddish-brown bark exfoliates in thin shredding strips on mature trees. Trunks are often fluted at the base. Heartwood is light brown and aromatic, and is commonly used for cedar chests. Dark blue green scale-like foliage may turn brown-green in winter.

Cultivars of this species often retain better foliage color in winter. This is a dioecious species (separate male and female trees). Female trees produce round, gray to blackish-green berry-like cones (1/4” diameter) that ripen in fall the first year. Berry-like cones are attractive to many birds.

Eastern redcedar prefers full sun with a dry to medium soil. It is a low maintenance tree with an evergreen leaf that provides winter interest. This tree tolerates deer, drought, erosion, dry and shallow rocky soil; it also may be grown near black walnut and is not affected by pollution.

Beautifying University City, MO