Utah juniper Cupressaceae Juniperus
osteosperma (Torr.) Little symbol: JUOS
Leaf: Evergreen, scale-like, most are tight to the twig in opposite pairs resulting in a slightly square twig, on vigorous shoots a few are awl-like and point away from the twig, no gland so leaves typically lack any resin; yellow-green.
Flower: Species is usually monoecious; males are small pale yellow in large clusters at ends of twigs; females are small, round pale green.
Fruit: Berry-like cones, round, 1/4 to 1/2 inch in diameter, bluish glaucous when young but turning reddish brown and dry when mature, usually 2 seeds per cone (may have 1), mature in two growing seasons.
Twig: Slender, initially covered with tight, yellow-green, scale-like leaves and somewhat angular, later turning reddish brown.
Bark: Gray with very irregular furrows and scaly ridges; stays rather thin.
Form: Small, shrubby tree or large bush up to 25 feet tall; typically branches low and develops a rounded crown.
Looks like: oneseed juniper - Rocky Mountain juniper - alligator juniper - Arizona cypress
Additional Range Information: Juniperus osteosperma is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting Utah juniper.
External Links: USDAFS FEIS Silvics - USDA Plants Database
All material © 2018 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson; Silvics reprinted from Ag Handbook 654