Old Gold Juniper Is the Perfect Evergreen!
Commonly known as Chinese Juniper, Old Gold is a native of Asia and a member of the Cypress family. Its graceful branches are covered with evergreen, needle-like foliage but the new growth that develops at the branch tips is yellow.
The new yellow growth at the tips gives the shrub an overall gold coloration and that’s how it got the name Juniper 'Old Gold'. The new foliage growth starts out as bright yellow and deepens to dark gold by mid-summer.
The graceful branches ascend from the shrub and are covered with evergreen needle-like foliage. The long branches are broad and arch upwards in the middle and curve downward at the end.
Old Gold does not produce flowers nor does the shrub attract pollinators but it does develop tiny bluish-black cones that resemble berries. The small berry-looking cone is the female seed and adds another layer of color to the shrub in the fall.
These berry-looking cones are not edible and won’t show up on the juniper until it reaches maturity.
Old Gold Juniper Landscaping
Use in rock gardens, as foundation plantings, as part of an Asian-themed garden, as a specimen plant, or as a ground cover on slopes to prevent erosion. Old Gold junipers are often used to cover sloping landscape areas where mowing is not desirable.
Its natural spreading growth habit will cover a slope in a few years and little to no maintenance will be needed in the area.
Old Gold is resistant to drought, pests, deer, salt, and pollution, making it an ideal plant for growing in many difficult landscape locations. The evergreen shrub will live up to 30 years under the right growing conditions.
Old Gold Juniper Care
Old Gold Juniper is hardy in USDA growing zones 4-9. Plant in a full sun location to keep the foliage bright and the shrub healthy.
It needs to be planted in well-draining soil and the soil needs to be kept moist during the first year. Once Old Gold becomes established it’s drought tolerant and will not need to be watered except in times of prolonged drought.
Feeding is not needed but if you choose to apply plant food, use one that is formulated for evergreens and apply it sparingly in the early spring.
Old Gold Juniper Size
This juniper variety will reach a mature height of 3-4 feet and a width of 4-5 feet. It’s a slow-growing shrub that grows 6 inches a year and will take about 10 years to reach its mature size.
Old Gold can be grown in a large container that has sufficient bottom drainage holes. While the shrub is tolerant of many environmental and soil conditions, it will not tolerate soggy soil. When the shrub is grown in a container, inspect the bottom of the container periodically to see if the roots are growing out of the bottom drainage holes. If they are, that’s an indication that the Old Gold juniper needs to be re-planted into a larger container or an in-ground location.
Pruning is not needed. The shrub grows into a compact and graceful formation naturally. If pruning does become needed to remove damaged or diseased branches, do it as needed.
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Sunlight Full Sun/Partial Shade
Mature Width 3-4 ft
Mature Height 4-5 ft
Growing Zones 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9