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Are Cedar & Juniper Berries the Same?

By Jacob J. Wright
Plants in genus Juniperus are called both junipers and cedars.
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Plants in the botanical genus Juniperus carry common names of both juniper and cedar. If the botanical identities of the juniper and cedar in question are both in genus Juniperus, their fleshy female cones or "berries" are the same.


Sprawling or upright ornamental shrubs often found in gardens, junipers bear bluish-black berries in fall and winter. Cedar trees, such as Juniperus virginiana, also bear these aromatic, soft berries on branch tips. True cedars, in genus Cedrus, do not produce similar cones. Cedrus cones are firm, upright, and the shape and size of poultry eggs.


Juniper and cedar plants in genus Juniperus bear male and female cones on separate plants. Only female plants bear the berries. Each female berry contains one to 10 seeds. Berries persist on branches for two to three years.

Fun Fact

The berries from the common juniper, Juniperus communis, are crushed and used to flavor gin. The scented oils in cedar tree berries and foliage supply the fragrance used in items marketed as having a pine scent.


About the Author


Jacob J. Wright became a full-time writer in 2008, with articles appearing on various websites. He has worked professionally at gardens in Colorado, Florida, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. Wright holds a graduate diploma in environmental horticulture from the University of Melbourne, Australia, and a Master of Science in public horticulture from the University of Delaware.