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Juniperus excelsa

Juniperus excelsa


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Product Information

Scientific name: Juniperus excelsa  M.Bieberstein  1800

Synonyms:Juniperus aegaea Griseb., Juniperus isophyllos K.Koch, Juniperus lasdeliana Lawson ex Gordon, Juniperus lycia Pall., Juniperus olivieri Carrière, Juniperus perkinsii Gordon, Juniperus religiosa Endl., Juniperus sabina Gueldenst., Juniperus sabina var. excelsa (M.Bieb.) Georgi, Juniperus sabina var. taurica Pall., Juniperus stricta (R.Sm.) Gordon, Juniperus taurica (Pall.) Lipsky, Juniperus venusta Gordon, Sabina excelsa (M.Bieb.) Antoine, Sabina isophyllos (K.Koch) Antoine, Sabina olivieri (Carrière) Antoine, Sabina religiosa Antoine

Common names: Greek juniper, Grecian juniper, Crimean juniper, Tethyan juniper



Tree to 25 m tall, with trunk to 2.5 m in diameter, or dwarfed at the alpine timberline. Bark reddish brown, weathering dark grayish brown, longitudinally furrowed. Crown broadly conical to irregular, with branches initially outstretched and rising but eventually crooked and drooping with age. Branchlets cylindrical or four-angled, 0.7-1.3 mm in diameter. Adult leaves in alternating pairs, mostly scalelike, 0.6-1.6 mm long, light green to yellowish green, with a prominent, often resinous, round or oblong oil gland, edges smooth, the tip curved in toward the twig or turned outward. Pollen and seed cones on the same or separate plants. Pollen cones solitary at the tips of short branchlets, shortly oblong, 3-4 mm long, with four or five alternating pairs of pollen scales. Seed cones solitary in leaf axils near the tips of branchlets, spherical, 6-14 mm through, purplish brown, often with a waxy coating, maturing in 2 years. Seeds two to eight, 4-6 mm long, reddish brown with a pale attachment scar scarcely extending beyond the base.

Tethyan region from the Balkan Peninsula and the Crimea (Ukraine) to Oman, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan. Dry rocky slopes of hills and mountains in juniper woodlands and conifer and mixed forests; 100-3,900 m.


Conservation Status

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern

(This species is very widespread and common in many areas. There is no indication of any overall decline, although regionally, especially in Central Asia, the subspecies polycarpos (Juniperus excelsa ssp. polycarpos) is in decline)



Farjon, A. (2010). A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.

Eckenwalder, J.E. (2009) Conifers of the World: The Complete Reference. Timber Press, Portland.

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Cambridge, UK /Gland, Switzerland


Copyright © Aljos Farjon, James E. Eckenwalder, IUCN, Conifers Garden. All rights reserved.

Product CodeJUNHYNMS58

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