Juniperus procumbens 'Kishiogima' / Kishiogima Japanese juniper

Juniperus procumbens 'Kishiogima' is a low-growing ground cover form of Japanese juniper, similar in form and texture to the Japanese garden juniper, Juniperus procumbens 'Nana' but is multi-colored with seasonal changes in color change In summer, it displays many shades of green with bright yellow highlights. In winter, the bright yellow becomes much more pale and subdued but the color variation remains.

After 10 years of growth, a mature specimen will measure 12 inches (30 cm) high and 3 feet (1 m) wide, an annual growth rate of 3 to 4 inches (7.5 - 10 cm), overwhelmingly more outward than up.

This cultivar originated as a color sport found in Japan in the late 1990s on the species. The plant is sometimes seen listed as 'Nana Kishiogima' which would be an invalid name because it was named after 1959. In addition, since the original sport was not found on a specimen of 'Nana,' including that in the cultivar name would make its classification extremely confusing and inaccurate.

Juniperus procumbens 'Kishiogima' in an arboretum setting.
Photo by Dennis Groh