Authors as Published

Alex X. Niemiera, Associate Professor, Department of Horticulture


Foliage: Awl-shaped needles about one-half inch long; sharp-to-the-touch; evergreen
To about 1.5 feet
Spread: To about 8 feet
Shape: Wide-spreading, low-growing ground cover

Main features

Shore juniper is an attractive low-growing wide-spreading ground cover species with attractive bluish foliage. This species tolerates salt spray and is quite tolerant of drought. Its drought tolerance has allowed it to be used in mass on slopes and other dry soil sites. This species does not tolerate poorly drained heavy soils. There are a few cultivars in the trade (see Additional Information section).

Plant Needs

Zone: 6 to 9
Light: Full sun
Moisture: Average to dry
Soil: Most soils except poorly drained heavy soil
pH range: Acid to alkaline


Shore juniper is useful on in mass, in planters, on slopes (branches will cascade).


This species does not require any special care if planted in a well-drained soil.

Additional Information

There are a few cultivars in the trade. Here are some of the more popular cultivars: 

  • ‘Blue Pacific’ most popular cultivar in the trade; low-growing form (about 1 foot tall) with handsome bluish foliage
  • ‘Emerald Sea’ similar to ‘Blue Pacific but is not as dense or blue
  • ‘Silver Mist’ foliage color is the claim to fame for this cultivar; needles are silver-blue-green height is about 1 foot.

Virginia Cooperative Extension materials are available for public use, reprint, or citation without further permission, provided the use includes credit to the author and to Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, and Virginia State University.

Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.

Publication Date

November 3, 2010

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