Skip Navigation

Species Search:
FieldGuidesthreatened and/or endangered search resultsthreatened and/or endangered

previous  | next

Southern Red Cedar Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola


Get Our Newsletters


Advanced Search

Alternate name: Coastal Red Cedar

Family: Cupressaceae, Cypress view all from this family

Description Aromatic evergreen distinguished by dense, drooping foliage. Mature specimens take on a flat-topped appearance. Bark reddish brown, fibrous, peels in strips. Leaves of two types; sharp, spreading needle-like juvenile leaves 5–10 cm. (2.0–3.9 in.) long, scale-like adult leaves 2–4 mm. (0.079–0.16 in.) long; arranged in opposite decussate pairs or whorls of three. Juvenile leaves found on young plants up to 3 years old, as scattered shoots on adult trees, usually in shade. Seed cones 3–7 cm. (1.2–2.8 in.) long, berry-like with fleshy scales, dark purple-blue with white wax cover giving an overall sky-blue color containing one, two, rarely up to four seeds.

Dimensions Height: 15 m. (50 ft.)
Diameter: 0.6 m (2 ft.).

Habitat Beaches & shorelines, Scrub, shrub & brushlands, Swamps (fresh & salt).

Range Florida, Southeast, Texas.

Discussion Called southern sand juniper or red cedar. Latin name silicola means "growing in sand." Some consider it a distinct species. Wood is used for fenceposts, cedar chests, cabinetwork, and carvings.