Juniperus chinensis 'Blue Alps,' is a striking evergreen conifer that adds elegance and structure to your garden all year round. With its dense, aromatic blue-green foliage and versatility, this Chinese juniper cultivar has become a favorite among gardeners and landscapers. From its appearance to its care, here's everything you need to know about this exceptional shrub.
Year-round beauty of Juniperus chinensis
'Blue Alps' is a handsome, upright conifer that can reach heights of about 4 meters (12 feet). Its dense blue-grey foliage provides a strong, ever-present focal point in your garden. Whether you choose to showcase it as a tall centerpiece or incorporate it into your evergreen backdrop, this slow-growing juniper thrives with minimal maintenance.
Blue Alps’ aromatic allure
One of the unique characteristics of 'Blue Alps' is its aromatic foliage, emitting a delightful scent reminiscent of gin. The scent becomes especially pronounced when the plant basks in full sun or when its leaves are gently rubbed. This aromatic feature adds an extra layer of sensory pleasure to your garden.
'Blue Alps' boasts a compact and slow-growing nature, making it a versatile addition to various garden settings. Its mounded or upright, conical shape lends itself well to borders, rockeries, pathways, or even as a low hedge or ground cover. Its adaptability and low maintenance requirements make it an ideal choice for gardeners of all levels of experience.
Juniperus chinensis is award-winning cultivar
This cultivar of Chinese juniper was discovered in Austria in 1968 and has earned the prestigious RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) Award of Garden Merit. Its distinctive blue-toned foliage, steely hue, and dense, upright growth make it a standout choice for UK gardens.
Hardiness and growth
'Blue Alps' is extremely hardy and can withstand British winters, provided its roots have well-draining soil. It's also drought-tolerant once established and can handle various soil types, from rockeries to gravel gardens. Its impressive growth rate ensures that it fills out quickly, covering the ground and protecting soil.
Versatile landscape uses for 'Blue Alps' Juniperus chinensis
This eye-catching shrub has a multitude of landscape uses. It excels in rockeries, gravel gardens, and as a standalone specimen in lawns or borders. Due to its dense growth and tolerance of pruning, it also shines as a hedge, providing both structure and evergreen beauty. 'Blue Alps' can effortlessly cover embankments, difficult areas, and road-facing front gardens, making it an excellent choice for wildlife gardens and low-maintenance spaces.
Caring for 'Blue Alps' is a breeze. It thrives in well-drained soil and prefers full sun but can tolerate partial shade. While it doesn't require frequent pruning, you can shape it during the winter months if desired. A generous layer of mulch around its roots in spring helps conserve moisture and provide essential nutrients for optimal growth.
Juniperus chinensis watering
Watering is one of the most critical aspects of care, especially for young shrubs. Ensuring it receives adequate water until it establishes itself is vital for its long-term health. Once settled, 'Blue Alps' will continue to adorn your garden with its timeless beauty, requiring minimal effort on your part.
In conclusion, Juniperus chinensis 'Blue Alps' is a garden treasure that offers year-round visual appeal, a delightful fragrance, and adaptability to various garden settings.