Juniperus × 'Grey Owl' / 'Grey Owl' Hybrid juniper

Juniperus × 'Grey Owl' is a shrubby, semi-prostrate bush selection of hybrid Juniper. Branching is horizontal to ascending with silvery-gray foliage turning purple in winter. Typical rate of growth in most areas is ca. 8 inches (20 cm) a year and somewhat wider resulting in a broad handsome shrub 6 feet tall by 10 feet wide (2 x 3 m) after 10 years in the landscape.
This cultivar originated in 1949 at G. Caam Oudebosch nursery, Grootendorst, The Netherlands. It was found as a seedling from J. virginiana 'Glauca' growing near a specimen of J. × pfitzeriana 'Wilhelm Pfitzer.' It is assumed to be a hybrid of these two cultivars. It should also be noted that J. × pfitzeriana is, in itself, a hybrid of J.chinensis x J.sabina, giving 'Grey Owl' the DNA of three different species of Juniperus. Gelderen & Smith – a chance cross with J. × pfitzeriana. It and 'Blue Cloud' are the best available cultivars in this color. Obrizok, Robert A. – a low-growing, wide spreading, with thin branches, bluish green foliage turning purple in winter.

Attribution from: Aris Auders and Derek Spicer, RHS Encyclopedia of Conifers, ©2012 Kingsblue Publishing

Juniperus × 'Grey Owl'
Photo by Sandra McLean Cutler
Juniperus × 'Grey Owl'
Photo by Sandra McLean Cutler
Juniperus × 'Grey Owl' — photo copyright of The Wildlife & Conifer Garden Donated by Don and Nonda Surrat, Ohio, USA.
Photo by Nonda Surrat
Juniperus × 'Grey Owl' — photo taken at The Gotelli Collection of The US National Arboretum, Washington, D.C., May 2006.
Photo by Dax Herbst


Dennis Groh

The Juniperus virginiana 'Grey Owl' nomenclature may not be appropriate. See ACS Bulletin Vol.18,No.2 pages 63 & 64 Technical Editor's Comment:
[Juniperus virginiana 'Grey Owl' is believed to be of hybrid origin with parents consisting of J. virginiana x J. x pfitzeriana 'Whilhelm Pfitzer'. However, three species are involved because parentage of J. x pfitzeriana is J.chinensis x J.sabina. No one is 100% sure of the parentage, so this is considered a purported hybrid and the correct way to write the name should be Juniperus 'Grey Owl'.]

Sara Malone

Dennis to be sure I understand, does that mean that when it is only a purported hybrid as opposed to a known hybrid (i.e. a hybrid of known parentage), you omit the 'x'?