Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?


Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - March 29, 2009

From: Wakefield, NH
Region: Northeast
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Blue rug juniper native to New Hampshire
Answered by: Damon Waitt


Is the blue rug juniper native to New Hampshire? I'm considering it for ground cover near lake in zip 03872.


If by Blue Rug Juniper, you mean Juniperus horizontalis (creeping juniper), then yes, it is native to New Hampshire. According to the USDA Forest Servive Fire Effects Information System, "creeping juniper occurs in the northern portion of the contiguous United States, throughout most of Canada, and in interior and coastal Alaska. Creeping juniper occurs in the Great Lakes states and in the New England states as far south as Pennsylvania. Creeping juniper's distribution throughout its range is disjunct and spotty

According to Floridata, there are at least 60 cultivars of J. horizontalis, the most popoular of which is "wilsonii" AKA "Blue Rug" juniper. It stays less than 6 in tall, and has foliage that is bright steel blue-green in summer, becoming mauve in winter. Creeping juniper will grow in acidic to slightly alkaline soils spreading at a rate of about 15 inches a year. Prune young shoots to encourage branching, but older branches may not produce new growth when pruned.

Light: Full sun is best. Tolerates partial shade, but foliage will be thinner.
Moisture: Established plants are highly drought tolerant.
Hardiness: USDA Zones 3 - 10.

Please note that several states list creeping juniper as a rare species, so be sure to secure your plants from a reputable source.


More Shrubs Questions

Is a Texas Mountain Laurel too messy for swimming pool area?
November 24, 2008 - Our landscaper has recommended a Texas Mountain Laurel to plant beside our swimming pool. We recently removed Cherry Laurels from the same location because of the mess they made in the pool (especiall...
view the full question and answer

Need a good plant for Clayton, NC.
August 23, 2012 - What would be a good plant for Clayton,NC for this time of year. I would like for it to come back every year so I don't have to replant. I have several full sun areas that I need to cover in the fron...
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native yellow lantana from Elgin TX
June 17, 2012 - Why do my yellow lantana buds turn brown and do not open fully? The sprinkler system does not spray onto the lantana.
view the full question and answer

Shrubs for Birds and Bees in North Texas
December 17, 2015 - I have a small backyard and would love to grow native plants for North Texas. I don't think I can grow trees, but for sure can do 1-2 crape myrtle-size shrubs. I have some rose of Sharon's going on ...
view the full question and answer

Texas natives that attract butterflies but not deer
December 13, 2012 - I'd like to have some plants in my garden that are butterfly attractors, but that whitetail deer won't like. I can find lists of butterfly plants, and lists of deer-resistant plants -- is there a li...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.