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How to Landscape With Juniper Trees

By Paula Ezop ; Updated September 21, 2017

Junipers are extremely popular in landscape design due to their different shapes and sizes. It seems that there is a juniper for every need--ground cover, wind breaks and specimen plantings. They are an evergreen that is a part of the conifer family, although they do not produce cones; instead they have small berries. Once established the juniper tolerates low rainfall and drought well. They are slow growing compared to deciduous shrubs and trees, however, a mature juniper will require little pruning (as opposed to the trimming and pruning requirements of deciduous shrubs and trees), making them an excellent choice in landscape design.

Understand the requirements of juniper trees and shrubs before designing and planting. Junipers require full sun, soil that drains well, mulch to keep the weeds down, and during the growing season they will need deep but infrequent watering.

Walk your property and measure the landscape areas. Make a sketch with the measurements to use as a guide/design template for your landscape design.

Visit a local nursery and understand the size requirements, and cost of the various junipers: low growing shrubs, tall columnar specimens, and ground cover. This will help you as you finalize your design.

Select low growing junipers such as Andorra Compacta Juniper, Andorra Juniper, and Arcadia Juniper for placement under windows as part of your landscape design. They will provide foundation coverage, and will not block the view from your home when they mature.

Select tall junipers such as the Spiral Juniper, Skyrocket, Hetz’s columnar, Eastern red cedar, Hollywood, or Blue Point as a focal point alongside the front/corner of your home. This tall specimen will act as a frame for your home, and pull your landscape together. Your eye will then be drawn back towards the entry way of your home.

Select tall junipers in areas that you wish to develop a windbreak or screen. Junipers utilized in this way are an excellent choice due to their low maintenance (constant trimming and pruning will not be required).

Select ground cover such as Blue Pacific Shore Juniper, Blue Chip Juniper, and Juniper Blueberry for low ground cover growth. Groundcover not only looks wonderful but also keeps weeds down.

Finalize your design. You can choose to do partial plantings (for budgetary concerns), the entire design, or you may even consider hiring a landscaper to complete the job for you.

 

Things You Will Need

  • Paper
  • Pencil

Tips

  • Junipers will probably be only a part of your landscape design as you will probably want to add accent plants and perhaps even some perennials and annuals (depending upon your tastes and the amount of time you want to spend gardening).
  • Large juniper trees and shrubs are quite costly, if cost is a concern then go with smaller specimens, which in time will grow and become lovely additions to your landscape.
  • Do not plant junipers near apple or crabapple trees due to a possible transfer of cedar apple rust to the juniper.

About the Author

 

Paula M. Ezop’s inspirational column "Following the Spiritual Soul" appeared in "Oconee Today," a Scripps Howard publication. She has published her first book, "SPIRITUALITY for Mommies," and her children's chapter book, "The Adventures of Penelope Star," will be published by Wiggles Press. Ezop has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Northeastern Illinois University and has been writing for 10 years.