Characteristics of Himalayan Juniper Tree (Juniperus squamata) in the Wild

Juniperus squamata
Himalayan juniper or Flaky juniper (Juniperus squamata) is a species of juniper tree native to the Himalayas and China, the tree grows at an altitude of 1,500-4,800 meters above sea level.

The Himalayan Juniper tree is currently widely planted as an ornamental tree in Europe and North America. He is valued for the bluish leaves and the physical form of the tree which is not too high.

Some Himalayan juniper cultivars that are widely used as ornamental plants include:

  • Juniperus squamata ‘Blue Carpet’
  • Juniperus squamata ‘Blue Star’
  • Juniperus squamata ‘Holger’

Varieties recognized by botanists include:

  • Juniperus squamata var. squamata
  • Juniperus squamata var. fargesii
  • Juniperus squamata var. hongxiensis
  • Juniperus squamata var. parviflora

As for the juniper tree that has a similar appearance to this Himalayan juniper, it is the Taiwan juniper (Juniperus morrisonicola). Although both are often confusing, lab tests say they have different DNAs.

 

Characteristics of Himalayan Juniper Leaf

Juniperus squamata Leaf
Source : flickr.com/Henry F. Michell

The leaves are needle-like, 3-9 mm long, arranged in six ranks, and are grayish-green or bluish-green like silver when viewed from a distance.

 

Characteristics of the Himalayan Juniper Fruit

Juniperus squamata Fruit
Source : flickr.com/Bahamut Chao

The fruit is ovoid, 4-9 mm long and 4-6 mm wide, glossy black, and contains one seed.

 

Characteristics of Himalayan Juniper Tree

Juniperus squamata Tree
Source : flickr.com/jeffplay

The Himalayan Juniper tree grows medium, it has a height of between 8-10 meters in the wild. The bark is brown, scaly, and the crown is irregular.

In its habitat, the Himalayan juniper occupies almost the entire mountain area, especially in forests, bushes, valleys, and along roads.

 

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