Garden

Juniper - Juniperus communis

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GeneralitŠ°

Juniper is a shrub or small tree also endemic to our peninsula. It has been known since ancient times because its oils are extracted for medicinal purposes and its berries find innumerable culinary uses. It is also highly appreciated as an ornamental plant: the innumerable varieties, cultivars and hybrids allow us to use it in many ways taking advantage of the different bearing sizes and sizes as well as being able to choose from several foliage colors.

A juniper can enhance large and small gardens; some cultivars can be grown safely even on a balcony or, as a bonsai, on a windowsill.

Large shrub or small evergreen tree, widespread in all temperate areas of the Northern Hemisphere; it is a very long-lived essence, which can reach 8-10 meters in height; dwarf varieties exist, widespread especially in high mountain areas.

The foliage is needle-like, pointed, glaucous green in color, crossed at the top by a light, very aromatic streak. These are dioecious plants, the male specimens in spring produce small inconspicuous flowers, yellowish white in color; while the female specimens produce greenish flowers, followed in summer by the fruits, small fleshy berries, called pampering, of green color, which turn black when ripe, containing 2-3 fertile seeds. Juniper berries are used in cooking and the essential oil contained in them in herbal medicine and pharmacology. Junipers are widespread in cultivation, both the upright or pyramidal varieties, and the dwarf or prostrate varieties.


Exposure

THE juniperus communis they love well sunny positions, but they can develop harmoniously even in a partially shaded place. They do not fear the cold and can also endure very intense and prolonged frosts. These are very rustic plants and shrubs, which are hardly ruined by adverse weather conditions. In very cold climates they can have a smaller development. They have no problems even in the presence of strong winds.

To have a vigorous growth the ideal is to insert the juniper where it is reached by the sun at least 8 hours every day, especially in the northern regions. If we live in mountain areas we prefer Juniperus sabina, more tolerant of the cold.

In the Center-South there will be good results even in slightly shaded positions. If we live in the first coastal strip, let's move towards the Contorta species, avoiding instead the Communis that can't stand the saltiness.

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