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Creeping Juniper Juniperus horizontalis

Phonetic Spelling
jew-NIP-er-us hor-ih-zon-TAL-iss
Description

Creeping Juniper is a native low-growing shrub that grows up to 1.5 feet high and branches can spread to form a dense mat up to 10 feet wide. It is found growing in rocky or sandy soils from rocky outcrops to streams. It is drought and deer tolerant and moderately salt tolerant. Creeping Juniper is fairly adaptable to soil types and pH as long as the soil is well-drained.  Although this plant is native to North America, it is mostly relegated to the Northern United States more sporadically in rocky areas.

There are many cultivars available for use as a ground cover in hot dry areas as slopes, rock gardens or retaining walls.

 

VIDEO Created by Elizabeth Meyer for "Trees, Shrubs and Conifers" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscapes:
Asian Garden- Pathway Shaded Patio Garden Entrance Statement, Fescue Grass
Cultivars / Varieties:
'Andorra', 'Bar Harbor', 'Blue Chip', 'Blue Forest', 'Blue Pacific', 'Blue Rug', 'Lime Glow', 'Maiden Gold', 'Mother Lode', 'Plumosa', 'Plumosa Compacta', 'Wiltonii', 'Youngstown'
Tags:
#evergreen#sun#drought tolerant#small shrub#salt tolerant#tsc#erosion control#spreading#deer resistant#groundcover#sandy soils tolerant#rocky soils tolerant#tsc-cg
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
'Andorra', 'Bar Harbor', 'Blue Chip', 'Blue Forest', 'Blue Pacific', 'Blue Rug', 'Lime Glow', 'Maiden Gold', 'Mother Lode', 'Plumosa', 'Plumosa Compacta', 'Wiltonii', 'Youngstown'
Tags:
#evergreen#sun#drought tolerant#small shrub#salt tolerant#tsc#erosion control#spreading#deer resistant#groundcover#sandy soils tolerant#rocky soils tolerant#tsc-cg
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Juniperus
    Species:
    horizontalis
    Family:
    Cupressaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Northern North America into Canada
    Wildlife Value:
    Deer resistant
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 6 in. - 1 ft. 6 in.
    Width: 4 ft. 0 in. - 10 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Shrub
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Sand
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    6-feet-12 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Blue
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Blue 2 to 3-seeded berry-like cone on recurved stalks appear the second year after pollination. They are less than 1/2 inch wide. May or may not be present on cultivars.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Description:
    Male cones have a cluster of yellowish stamens up to 5 mm. long. Female cones have a cluster of small scales during their first year. Wind pollinated. Appear late spring or summer.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Needled Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Blue
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Long-lasting
    Leaf Type:
    Needles
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    The mature leaves are scale-like with scales closely pressed to stem and found in a four rank pattern. Young leaves are awl-like in opposite pairs. Color is green to blue-green in summer. May take on a purplish hue in winter
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Red/Burgundy
    Surface/Attachment:
    Peeling
    Bark Description:
    Reddish-brown and peeling
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Branchlets are brown and smooth. New growth is yellow-green
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Coastal
    Rock Wall
    Slope/Bank
    Landscape Theme:
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Mass Planting
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Erosion
    Salt