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Juniperus (scopulorum)

Tara Luna
USDI NPS - Glacier National Park
West Glacier, Montana 59936
(406) 888-7835

Family Scientific Name: Cupressaceae
Family Common Name: Cedar family
Scientific Name: Juniperus scopulorum Sarg.
Common Name: Rocky Mountain Juniper
Species Code: JUNSCO
Ecotype: Lodgepole pine forest, 1100m elevation, Glacier National Park, Flathead Co., MT.
General Distribution: J. scopulorum occurs in coastal islands to inland valleys and lower mountains; B.C. south to Oregon, east to the Dakotas, Nebraska, Colorado, New Mexico, and Nebraska.
Propagation Goal: plants
Propagation Method: vegetative
ProductType: Container (plug)
Stock Type: 800 ml containers
Time To Grow: 15 Months
Target Specifications: Stock Type: Container cutting<br> Height: 15 cm<br> Caliper: 5 mm<br> Root System: firm plug in 800 ml container.
Propagule Collection: Vegetative Propagation Method: Pre-rooting
Type of Cutting: Early Summer semi-hardwood stem tip cuttings.
Early summer semi-hardwood cuttings were collected in early June from healthy field plants growing in full sun. Donor plants were just emerging from winter dormancy with only a small amount of new needle growth evident. Cuttings were 12 cm in length and 5 mm in caliper.
Propagule Processing: Cuttings are kept moist and under refrigeration prior to pre treatment. It is best to treat cuttings the same day of collection.
Pre-Planting Treatments: Cutting Treatments: Cuttings were cut into 12 cm lengths, with the base recut and 1/2 of leaves or buds removed. Cuttings were placed in a 2 minute fungicide bath to remove surface pathogens. Cuttings were treated with 8000 ppm IBA rooting powder, and stuck in mist bed with at least 2 nodes below the surface of the rooting medium.
Rooting %:68%
Growing Area Preparation/
Annual Practices for Perennial Crops:
The outdoor mistbed has automatic intermittent mist that is applied at 6 second intervals every 6 minutes. Too frequent misting will result in leaf and stem rot. Bottom heat is maintained at 21C with heating cables 12 cm beneath rooting media. Rooting medium is 50% perlite and 50% sand. Mistbed is covered with shadecloth during rooting. After cuttings are lifted from mistbed, they are potted and placed in outdoor shadehouse for 2 weeks. Plants are later moved to outdoor nursery in full sun.
Establishment Phase: Time to Transplant: 12 weeks.
Cuttings that were pre rooted were lifted out of mistbed after adequete root systems were formed. Roots generate from the nodes below the surface of the rooting medium.
Length of Establishment Phase: 12 weeks
Active Growth Phase: After cuttings were lifted from the mistbed, they were potted into 800 ml containers.
Growing medium used is 70% 6:1:1 milled sphagnum peat, perlite, and vermiculite and 30% coarse sand with Osmocote controlled release fertilizer (13N:13P2O5:13K2O; 8 to 9 month release rate at 21C) and Micromax fertilizer (12%S, 0.1%B, 0.5%Cu, 12%Fe, 2.5%Mn, 0.05%Mo, 1%Zn) at the rate of 2 grams of Osmocote and 0.5 gram of Micromax per container. Cuttings were irrigated after potting and placed in the shadehouse for 2 weeks.
After establishment in the shadehouse, plants were moved to full sun exposure in the outdoor nursery.
Length of Active Growth Phase: 12 weeks
Hardening Phase: Plants are fertilized with 10-20-20 liquid NPK at 200 ppm during August and September. Plants were given one final irrigation prior to winterization.
Length of Hardening Phase: 4 weeks
Harvesting, Storage and Shipping: Total Time to Harvest: 1.3 years
Harvest Date: September

Storage Conditions: Overwinter in outdoor nursery under insulating foam cover and snow.
Length of Storage: 5 months
Other Comments: Seed Propagation:
Seed Collection: Fruit is collected when berry-like cones are blue. Ideally, cones must be two years old at this stage.
Seed Processing: The cones are macerated and seed is washed, screened and cleaned. There are usually 1 to 4 seeds per cone.
Seeds are brown at maturity.
Seeds/Kg: 80,300/ kg
Seed longevity is up to 10 years.
Seed dormancy is classified as physiological dormancy.
Seed Treatments: 48 hour running water rinse; followed by 60 to 100 day warm, moist stratification followed by 90 to 100 day cold, moist stratification. Juniper seeds have both physiological and seed coat dormancy which are often difficult to overcome. The prolonged warm/cold stratification treatment is effective in producing sizable seedlings in 2 years.
Sowing/Planting Technique: Seeds are hand sown and covered with medium.
Germination temperatures must be kept cool (at 13 to 18C) until emergence. After seedlings are well established, greenhouse temperatures can be raised to 16:8 hr 21/15 C day/night temperature cycles.
References: Flora of the Pacific Northwest, Hitchcock and Cronquist, University of Washington Press, 7th printing, 1981.
Seeds of the Woody Plants in the United States, Agriculture Handbook No. 450, U.S.F.S., Washington D.C., 1974.
Glacier Park Native Plant Nursery Propagation Records, unpublished.


Luna, Tara; Evans, Jeff; Wick, Dale. 2008. Propagation protocol for production of Container (plug) Juniperus scopulorum Sarg. plants 800 ml containers; USDI NPS - Glacier National Park West Glacier, Montana. In: Native Plant Network. URL: http://NativePlantNetwork.org (accessed 2021/01/20). US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources.

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