Posted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:13 am
by Jess Riddle

I always enjoy your descriptions of European trees and forests, but this post caught my attention in particular since I’ve done research on Juniperus communis. The North American variety, depressa, can grow either as a sprawling bush or a well formed tree. However, I’ve never heard of any approaching the size of the one you measured. It’s also interesting to me that the record tree is known to be old and competes with shade tolerant species. The tree form depressa I have seen appear able to grow relatively quickly (about a foot per year), but are very shade intolerant.

Seeing Alnus incana in Europe and the general productivity of forests given such high latitudes is also interesting.

The tallest I know of in North America
A. incana var. rugosa 10” (25 cm) cbh x 28.9’ (8.8 m) Cicero Swamp Wildlife Management Area, NY
J. communis var. depressa 15.5” (39 cm) cbh x 24.2’ (7.4 m) Lake Bonaparte, NY
J. communis var. depressa 16” (41 cm) cbh x 23.5’ (7.2 m) Lake Bonaparte, NY


the 16" cbh common juniper in front of a white pine