Juniperus bermudiana

Juniperus bermudiana is a species of juniper endemic to Bermuda. This species is most commonly known as Bermuda cedar, but is also referred to as Bermuda juniper. Historically, this tree formed woodland that covered much of Bermuda. Settlers cleared part of the forest and the tree was used for many purposes including building construction and was especially prized for shipbuilding. However scale insects introduced during World War II devastated the forests, killing over 99% of the Bermuda cedar. Since then, the salt tolerant casuarina has been planted as a replacement species, and a small number of Bermuda cedars have been found to be resistant to the scale insects. Populations of certain endemic birds which had co-evolved with the tree have plummeted as a result of its demise.

Bermuda cedar
Image-Juniperus bermudiana - mature
Scientific classification
J. bermudiana
Binomial name
Juniperus bermudiana


The Bermuda cedar is an evergreen tree growing up to 15 m tall with a trunk up to 60 cm thick (larger specimens existed in the past) and thin bark that exfoliates in strips. The foliage is produced in blue-green sprays, with the individual shoots 1.3–1.6 mm wide, four-sided (quadriform) in section. The leaves are scale-like 1.5–2.5 mm long (up to 4 mm long on strong-growing shoots) and 1-1.5 mm broad, with an inconspicuous gland; they are arranged in opposite decussate pairs, occasionally decussate whorls of three. Juvenile plants bear needle-like leaves 4–8 mm long. The seed cones are irregularly globose to broad pyriform, 4–6 mm long and 5–8 mm broad, soft and berry-like, green at first, maturing bluish-purple about 8 months after pollination; they contain one or two (rarely three) seeds. The male cones are 4–6 mm long, yellow, turning brown after pollen release in early spring.


Juniperus Bermudiana 09
Old-growth trees survive and prosper in a Paget garden.

A threat to the continued existence of Bermuda's cedars arose in the mid-1940s when the species was attacked by two species of scale insects, Lepidosaphes newsteadi and Carulaspis minima, which were unintentionally introduced from the United States' mainland during the wartime construction of US airbases in Bermuda. By 1978, these parasites had killed 99% of Bermuda's cedars, some 8 million trees. However, the remaining 1% of the trees proved somewhat resistant to the scale insects, and efforts by Bermuda's Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Parks to plant young cedars from this resistant strain throughout Bermuda have saved the trees from extinction.

In the 1950s and 1960s, the casuarina (Casuarina equisetifolia, also known as horsetail tree and Australian pine), native to Australia, was introduced into Bermuda to replace the Bermuda cedar's windbreak functions. However, in Bermuda, casuarinas have proved to be highly aggressive, and no other plants are able to survive beneath them. Still, like the Bermuda cedar, the casuarina's foliage is resistant to wind and salt, and these features have made casuarinas popular with gardeners in Bermuda. Other species introduced in an attempt to replace the cedar forest included the bay grape (Coccoloba uvifera). Along with the casuarina, the cedar's main introduced competitor for space is the Brazilian pepper (Schinus terebinthifolius).

The species is occasionally grown as an ornamental tree outside of Bermuda, and may have become naturalised on Hawaii and Saint Helena. It is reported that more than 6,500 of them were planted in Hawaii between 1921 and 1953, and that it has established wild populations there.[2]

The Bermuda cedar forests that covered Bermuda fed and housed many species of bird that had evolved and adapted to live amongst them, and thus became endemic to Bermuda. With the loss of so many trees the populations of such species have plummeted to near extinction. These birds include the Bermuda white-eyed vireo, and a possible subspecies of eastern bluebird. Efforts by the public and the government have been made to boost their populations along with the populations of the Bermuda cedar. However the Bermuda cedar may take 200 years to reach full maturity, and the birds may not survive this long. With recent sea level rises, some low-lying old-growth cedars are being infiltrated with seawater and are beginning to die off.

Uses and history

Cedar Avenue - Hamilton Bermuda
A postcard of Cedar Avenue in Hamilton, Bermuda before the species declined.

It is known for its heavy, sweet aroma, useful and attractive reddish timber, significant role in Bermuda's history, and notable presence in Bermuda's historic homes.

When English settlers arrived in Bermuda, forests of Bermuda cedar flourished throughout the islands, and the species continued to thrive even as settlers developed the land. The wood was utilized by settlers for widely varying purposes, including home, church, jail, and shipbuilding, interior woodworking, furniture construction, coffin-making, and export for sale. In addition, the cones were used by settlers as food for both themselves and their animals, and to prepare cedarberry syrup as a treatment for toothaches and coughs. Settlers also boiled the shoots in water to create an elixir for lowering fevers. Furthermore, the wood was found to repel moths and fleas as well as prevent mildew and rot, so many Bermuda residents used the wood to line closets and drawers.

Featherbed Alley Printshop Bermuda
The Featherbed Alley Printshop Museum, in the cellar of the Mitchell House, built c. 1720, which features cedar beams, though the floor boards above are of then-more expensive, imported wood.

The wood was especially prized by shipbuilders. It could be worked as soon as it was felled, and was naturally resistant to rot and woodworms. It was as strong as oak, but much lighter, contributing to the speed and maneouverability for which Bermudian ships were noted and prized. Its abundance enabled Bermudians to turn wholesale to a maritime economy after the dissolution of the Somers Isles Company in 1684.

In 1627, in an effort to conserve Bermuda's cedar forests, the local assembly passed legislation to restrict export of Bermuda cedar for shipbuilding. In addition, between 1693 and 1878, the Bermuda legislature passed sixteen further acts placing restrictions on the uses of Bermuda cedar. Despite these Acts, the shipbuilding industry eventually denuded much of Bermuda's landscape by the 1830s. Only the dawn of the age of steam-driven, steel-hulled ships allowed the forest to recover.

Many historic homes in Bermuda feature interior woodwork and furnishings made from Bermuda cedar. Examples of these homes include the Mayflower House, Camden House, Tucker House, and Verdmont House, the latter of which, according to the Bermuda National Trust, contains the colony's finest collection of antique Bermuda cedar furnishings. Because it is now both scarce, and expensive, and it is featured in many grand homes, its scent has come to be associated with wealth.

The Bermuda hedge fund Juniperus Capital is named after this species.[3]

External links


  1. ^ Wingate, D.B.; Adams, R. & Gardner, M. (2011). "Juniperus bermudiana". The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN. 2011: e.T30376A9532928. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2011-2.RLTS.T30376A9532928.en. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  2. ^ Little Jr., Elbert L. (1989). Common Forest Trees of Hawaii (Native and Introduced). U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service. p. 321.
  3. ^ "Origin of the Juniperus Name". Juniperus Capital. Retrieved January 17, 2011.
Bermuda Industrial Union

The Bermuda Industrial Union (BIU) is a general trade union in Bermuda. It was founded in 1946 and has a membership of 4200.

The BIU is affiliated to the International Trade Union Confederation, and Public Services International.

Bermuda Monetary Authority

The Bermuda Monetary Authority (the Authority) is the integrated regulator of the financial services sector in Bermuda. It is not a central bank, and does not provide lender of last resort facilities.

Established under the Bermuda Monetary Authority Act 1969, the Authority supervises, regulates and inspects financial institutions operating from within the jurisdiction. It also issues Bermuda's national currency; manages exchange control transactions; assists other authorities in Bermuda with the detection and prevention of financial crime; and advises the Government and public bodies on banking and other financial and monetary matters.

The Authority develops risk-based financial regulations that it applies to the supervision of Bermuda's banks, trust companies, investment businesses, investment funds, fund administrators, money service businesses and insurance companies. It also licenses companies and regulates the Bermuda Stock Exchange.

Bermuda Public Services Association

The Bermuda Public Services Union (BPSU) is a trade union in Bermuda. It was founded in 1952 as the Bermuda Civil Service Association, and changed its name in 1971.

The BPSU is affiliated to Public Services International and Union Network International.

Bermudiana (disambiguation)

Bermudiana is derived from the Bermuda, the name of an Atlantic archipelago that is a British Overseas Territory. It may refer to:

Bermudiana Mill., a former genus of plants in the iris family now accepted as species of Sisyrinchium, Calydorea, Eleutherine, Iris, Libertia, and Olsynium

Bermudiana bermudiana, known as Bermudiana, now accepted as Sisyrinchium bermudiana

Carex bermudiana, a species of sedge indigenous to Bermuda

Juniperus bermudiana, commonly known as Bermuda cedar, a species of juniper indigenous to Bermuda

Pecluma bermudiana, a species of fern indigenous to Bermuda.

Agrostis bermudiana, now accepted as Cynodon dactylon, Bermuda grass

Chiococca bermudiana, now accepted as Chiococca alba, a flower in the family Rubiaceae

Cedarbridge Academy

Cedarbridge Academy is a senior high school in Devonshire Parish, Bermuda.

It is one of Bermuda's two public senior schools.

Government House, Bermuda

Government House is the official residence of the Governor of Bermuda. It is located on Langton Hill, overlooking the North Shore in Hamilton, Pembroke. Government House is also the official residence of the Bermudian head of state (currently Queen Elizabeth II) when staying in Bermuda.

Index of Bermuda-related articles

The following is an alphabetical list of topics related to the British Overseas Territory of the Bermuda Islands.

List of newspapers in Bermuda

This is a list of newspapers in Bermuda.

Bernews (Hamilton, Bermuda) (began publication in 2010)

The Royal Gazette (Hamilton, Bermuda) (began publication in 1828)

Workers' Voice (published by Bermuda Industrial Union), (Hamilton, Bermuda)The following were previously published:

The Bermuda Gazette (published from 1784-1816) (St. George's, Bermuda)

Bermuda Sun (published from 1964-2014) (Hamilton, Bermuda)

Mid-Ocean News (published from 1911-2009) (Hamilton, Bermuda)

List of schools in Bermuda

This is a list of schools in Bermuda. It includes aided schools, maintained schools and private schools.

Pencil cedar

Pencil cedar may refer to any of several species of tree in the families Araliaceae and Cupressaceae:

African pencil cedar - Juniperus procera CUPRESSACEAE

Bermudan pencil cedar - Juniperus bermudiana CUPRESSACEAE

Black pencil cedar - Polyscias elegans ARALIACEAE

Pencil cedar - Polyscias murrayi ARALIACEAE

Pencil cedar, Virginia pencil cedar - Juniperus virginiana CUPRESSACEAE

Postal codes in Bermuda

Postcodes in the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda use two different formats, depending on whether they are for street addresses or PO Boxes.

Postcodes for street addresses consist of two letters and two digits, as follows:

Mr. & Mrs Householder

Upper Apt # 1

9 Leafy Lane


BERMUDAPostcodes for PO Box addresses, however, consist of four letters. In the capital, Hamilton, a PO Box address would be:

Mr. Boxholder

PO Box HM 2469


BERMUDAIn Hamilton, each PO Box number range has a different postcode, while postcodes for PO Box addresses in the rest of Bermuda will always end in BX, for example:

P.O. Box DV 583

Devonshire DV BX


Public holidays in Bermuda

This is a list of named Holidays in Bermuda. Every Sunday is also considered a holiday.

Somerset Bridge, Bermuda

Somerset Bridge is a small bridge in Bermuda. Connecting Somerset Island with the mainland in the western parish of Sandys, Somerset Bridge is reputedly the smallest working drawbridge in the world.

The bridge is mentioned in the acts of Bermuda's first Parliament, held in St. George's on 1 Aug. 1620. Bridges were to be constructed at Somerset, the Flatts, and Coney Island. Additionally, the road from Somerset to Warwick was to be improved, and extended to Castle Point. The bridge appears on a 1624 map of Bermuda.The bridge is opened by hand, via a 32 inch bisected plank, allowing the passage of a sailboat's mast. The drawbridge is depicted on a Bermudian banknote.The nearby sports club was demolished in October 2008.

Telecommunications in Bermuda

Bermuda has three main television stations, a small cable microwave system, two public GSM services (Digicel, One Communications), multiple submarine cables (CB-1, Gemini Bermuda, GlobeNet, CBUS), and two main Internet service providers (Digicel, One Communications) as well as smaller wireless operators such as BlueWave.

Television in Bermuda

Television in Bermuda was introduced in 1958. All broadcast television stations serving the islands of Bermuda operate from the city of Hamilton, Bermuda. The current television stations in Bermuda include:

ZFB-TV, an ABC affiliate owned by Bermuda Broadcasting

ZBM-TV, a CBS affiliate owned by Bermuda BroadcastingThe other television station formerly serving across this country was:

VSB-TV, an NBC affiliate (defunct in 2014)

The Berkeley Institute

The Berkeley Institute is a public senior high school in Pembroke Parish, Bermuda. As of 2016, it had about 500 students.The school was established in 1897. It was originally located in the Samaritan's Hall, but in 1902 it moved to its current location. It is one of two public senior schools in the territory.

Warwick Academy

Warwick Academy is the oldest school in Bermuda, established in 1662. It is in located in Warwick Parish.

It was named after the English colonial administrator Robert Rich, 2nd Earl of Warwick, who gave the original land. Its first Schoolmaster was Richard Norwood, the mathematician who had carried out the first and second surveys of Bermuda in 1616 and 1627, respectively.

Wildlife of Bermuda

The flora and fauna of Bermuda form part of a unique ecosystem due to Bermuda's isolation from the mainland of North America. The wide range of endemic species and the islands form a distinct ecoregion, the Bermuda subtropical conifer forests.

Extant Cupressaceae species
Subfamily Athrotaxidoideae
Subfamily Callitroideae
Subfamily Cunninghamioideae
Subfamily Cupressoideae
Subfamily Sequoioideae
Subfamily Taiwanioideae
Subfamily Taxodioideae


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