Germination of Redberry Juniper (Juniperus pinchotii) Seed in Western Texas


  • Joseph L. Petersen
  • Darrell N. Ueckert
  • Charles A. Taylor
  • Keith R. Shaffer


after-ripening, birds, dormancy, ingestion, longevity, raccoons, scarification, stratification, sulfuric acid, temperature


We investigated germination/seedling emergencecharacteristics of redberry juniper (Juniperus pinchotii Sudw.)  seeds harvested in December 1993 from 20 trees in the central Edwards Plateau and in December 1996 from 21 trees. Germination of seeds collected from raccoon (Procyon lotor)  and bird (American robin [Turdus migratorius] and cedar waxwing [Bombycilla cedrorum]) feces in the northwestern Edwards Plateau in December 1996 were also tested. Seedling emergence from the 1993 seeds planted in soil in a greenhouse averaged 5.7% and emergence ceased after one year. Seedling emergence occurred primarily in winter (3.53%) and autumn (1.51%). Average laboratory germination at 68º F of the 1996 seeds was 8.8% at 3 and 52 mo after seed harvest. Scarification and stratifications treatments produced evidence of impermeable seed coats, embryo dormancy, and/or germination inhibitors, but these constraints seem of little biological or ecological significance.  Redberry juniper seed germination is relatively low, but a single tree can produce thousands of seed in a favorable year and the seeds can potentially survive for one to several years. Long-range redberry juniper management plans should consider controlling trees before they reach reproductive maturity and using prescribed fire to control seedlings soon after years when climatic conditions favor juniper seed production, germination, and establishment.




How to Cite

Petersen, J. L., Ueckert, D. N., Taylor, C. A., & Shaffer, K. R. (2016). Germination of Redberry Juniper (Juniperus pinchotii) Seed in Western Texas. Texas Journal of Agriculture and Natural Resources, 18, 28–30. Retrieved from



Research Articles