Juniperus chinensis 'Kaizuka' / Hollywood juniper

Juniperus chinensis 'Kaizuka' is a unique, irregular upright selection of Chinese juniper with long sinuous branches holding dense, deep green foliage and light Blue berries. After 10 years of growth, a mature specimen will measure 6 feet (2 m) tall and 3 feet (1 m) wide, an annual growth rate of 6 to 8 inches (15 - 20 cm). Although the main body of its foliage is as thick as if it had been sheared, delicately twisted, upright branches emerge gracefully all around the plant, in almost a flame-like manner.

Do not expect a row of them to provide a uniform shape since crown form varies. Hollywood juniper develops into a showcase specimen without pruning and is probably best used for this purpose. Planted on four to six-foot centers, it can develop into a thick screen which could be useful along a driveway, where a narrow, bright green screen is often needed to create privacy.

This conifer grows best in full sun, more open in partial shade, and needs well-drained soil or it will decline from root rot. It tolerates alkaline soil and is quite drought-tolerant but root regeneration is slow after transplanting from a field nursery. It is frequently offered in containers from a nursery.

This cultivar originated around 1920 at the Yokohama Nursery, Yokohama City, Kanagawa, Japan. This has become such a popular landscape tree around Los Angeles, California, that it's evolved the popular common name, Hollywood juniper. This conifer is also incorrectly known as 'Torulosa' and 'Tortuosa.'

Juniperus chinensis 'Kaizuka' at University of Maine campus, Orono Maine.
Photo by Don Levesque
Juniperus chinensis 'Kaizuka' — a closeup of foliage detail.
Photo by Univ. of FL Extension
Juniperus chinensis 'Kaizuka' at an evaluation site in Gainsville, FL. So far this cultivar seems to be holding its dwarf form such that it can be recommended for planting under power lines.
Photo by Univ. of FL Extension
Juniperus chinensis 'Kaizuka' at an evaluation site in Florida.