Juniperus osteosperma (Utah Juniper) is a shrub or small tree reaching 3-6 m (rarely to 9 m) tall. It is native to the southwestern United States, in Utah, Nevada, Arizona, western New Mexico, western Colorado, Wyoming, southern Montana, southern Idaho and eastern California. It grows at moderate altitudes of 1,300-2,600 m, on dry soils, often together with Pinus monophylla.
The shoots are fairly thick compared to most junipers, 1.5-2 mm diameter. The leaves are arranged in opposite decussate pairs or whorls of three; the adult leaves are scale-like, 1-2 mm long (to 5 mm on lead shoots) and 1-1.5 mm broad. The juvenile leaves (on young seedlings only) are needle-like, 5-10 mm long. The cones are berry-like, 8-13 mm in diameter, blue-brown with a whitish waxy bloom, and contain a single seed (rarely two); they are mature in about 18 months. The male cones are 2-4 mm long, and shed their pollen in early spring. It is largely monoecious with both sexes on the same plant, but around 10% of plants are dioecious, producing cones of only one sex.
Fruits can be eaten fresh or it can be dried and ground into a powder then baked into cakes. A thin flesh, it is sweet but strongly flavoured of resin and has a mealy texture. Used as a flavouring in stews.
The cones are about 6 - 18mm in diameter, they take 2 years to mature.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought. (info source: wikipedia.org)
Fruit - raw or cooked. A thin flesh, it is sweet but strongly flavoured of resin and has a mealy texture. Used as a flavouring in stews. The fruit can be eaten fresh or it can be dried and ground into a powder then baked into cakes. The cones are about 6 - 18mm in diameter, they take 2 years to mature. (info source: pfaf.org)
Genus - Juniperus
Species - Osteosperma
Common name - Utah Juniper
Pre-Treatment - Required
Hardiness zones - 6 - 8
Height - 12m (39ft 4in)
Plant type - Large Shrub / Small tree
Vegetation type - Evergreen
Exposure - Full Sun
Growth rate - Slow
Soil PH - Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Soil type - light (sandy), medium (loamy), heavy (clay)
Water requirements - Drought tolerant, average water
Landscape uses - Woodland Garden Canopy; Sunny Edge
Germination rate - 70%
Leaf / Flower color - Green / --
|Germination||1. Place your juniper seeds in a plastic container of water and leave them to soak for at least 12 hours.|
2. Remove the seeds from the water and make a tiny nick in each seed, using a sharp knife. This process is termed scarification and is an important step towards germination.
3. Plant the seeds in trays. Place each seed in a 3/4-inch deep depression in the soil. Cover the seeds with potting soil, but don't compact the ground over them. Keep the soil in the potting trays moist.
4. Place mulch over the seedlings.
5. Cover the mulch with grit to dissuade moss and algae from growing over the potting soil.
6. Keep the seeds at a temperature of 39F (+2-+4C) for 3 months and then transfer them to a room with a temperature of 70F/-+20C. This process is termed stratification and the seeds will begin to germinate at this warmer temperature.
7. Keep the seedlings in a shaded area for the first year of their lives. There will be sporadic germination of these seeds over a two to three-year period. It is important to realize that each individual seed from the same pod has its own degrees of embryo viability. Certain seeds will germinate at once, while others will go into a dormant state. Seeds also have "chemical locks" that degrade to allow germination at different times. These mechanisms afford the tree the best chance at survival, so don't be concerned if not all of your seeds germinate at the same time.
Info source: eHow.com