Juniperus virginiana

 

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Family: Cupressaceae

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Eastern Redcedar

 

 

 

Eastern redcedar is one species of about 50 in the genus Juniperus, native to North America [14], Central America [11], West Indies [5], Bermuda [1] and the Old World [25]. The word juniperus is the classical Latin name, while the word virginiana means "of Virginia".

Other Common Names: Amerikaanse magnolia, amerikansk rod-ceder, bleistift-zeder, blyerts-en, cedar, cederhoutboom, cedre, cedre de Virginie, cedre rouge, cedre rouge americain, cedro per matite, cedro rosso americano, cedro vermelho, coast juniper, coast red cedar, eastern red juniper, eastern red cedar, enebro americano, enebro criollo, enebro rojo americano, enebro virginiano, genevrier rouge, genevrier rouge de l'Amerique, ginepri d'america, ginepro della Virginia, Ienuparul virginiana, juniper, pencil cedar, pencil juniper, red juniper, red cedar, rod-en, sabina de costa, sand cedar, savin, savin red cedar, southern juniper, southern red cedar, southern red juniper, Tennessee red cedar, Virginiaanse jeneverbes, Virginian cedar, Virginian pencil, cedar, Virginische zeder, Virginische potlood-ceder, virginische sevenboom, virginischer wacholder.

Distribution

Eastern redcedar is native to the eastern half of the United States, from Maine west to New York, Quebec, Ontario, Michigan, Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota south to Nebraska and Texas east through Florida and Georgia.

The Tree

Eastern redcedar has the widest distribution of any other conifer in the eastern United States. It can reach heights of 120 feet and 4 feet in diameter. It is a "pioneer" species, being one of the first trees to invade disturbed areas. It grows very slowly, trees that are 20 years old are only about 20 feet tall with a diameter of 3 inches. Older trees have wide, fluted, buttressed bases.

The Wood

General

Eastern redcedar has a thin, white sapwood, while the heartwood is red to deep reddish-brown. The sapwood may be in stripes, alternating with stripes of heartwood. The wood is moderately low in strength and stiffness, but it is high in shock resistance. It shrinks little during drying and is good dimensional stability. It is easy to work and has moderate hardness. It splits easily, and has good nailing and gluing properties.

 

Mechanical Properties (2-inch standard)

 

 

 

 

Compression

 

 

 

 

Specific

gravity

MOE

x106 lbf/in2

MOR

lbf/in2

Parallel

lbf/in2

Perpendicular

lbf/in2

WMLa

in-lbf/in3

Hardness

lbf

Shear

lbf/in2

Green

0.44

0.65

7000

3570

700

15.0

650

1010

Dry

0.47

0.88

8800

6020

920

8.3

900

NA

aWML = Work to maximum load.

Reference (13).

 

 

Drying and Shrinkage

Type of shrinkage

Percentage of shrinkage
(green to final moisture content)

0% MC

6% MC

20% MC

Tangential

4.7

3.8

1.6

Radial

3.1

2.5

1.0

Volumetric

7.8

6.2

2.6

References: 0% MC (13),
6% and 20% MC (12).

Kiln Drying Schedulesa

 

Conventional temperature/moisture content-controlled schedulesa


Condition

4/4, 5/4
stock

6/4 stock

8/4
stock

10/4
stock

12/4
stock

British schedule
4/4 stock

Standard

T5-A4

NA

T5-A3

NA

NA

NA

aReference (3, 10).

 

Working Properties: Eastern redcedar is easy to work with both hand and machine tools and has a straight grain. It has tight knots, which can add to the beauty of the wood. It splits easily, hold nails well and has excellent gluing properties.

Durability: The heartwood is highly resistant to decay and attack by insects, including termites. The scent of the wood is said to be a natural insect repellent, although this has not been shown to be true scientifically.

Preservation: No information available at this time.

Uses: Fenceposts, chests, wardrobes, closet linings, pencils, carvings, pet bedding, furniture, flooring, scientific instruments, small boats and household items. Oil from the wood (cedrol) is used in the manufacture of perfumes and medicines. It is also used for Christmas trees.

 

Toxicity: May cause dermatitis and respiratory problems (4, 9 and 14).

 

Additional Reading and References Cited (in parentheses)

 

1. Back, E. A. Red cedar chests as protectors against moth damage. Washington, DC: USDA, Bulletin No. 1051; 1922.

2. Betts, H. S. Eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana). Washington, DC: USDA, Forest Service; 1937.

3. Boone, R. S.; Kozlik, C. J.; Bois, P. J., and Wengert, E. M. Dry kiln schedules for commercial woods - temperate and tropical. Madison, WI: USDA Forest Service, FPL-GTR-57; 1988.

4. Hausen, B. M. Woods injurious to human health. A manual. New York, NY: Walter de Gruyter; 1981.

5. Hemmerly, T. E. Economic uses of eastern red cedar. Economic Botany. 1970:39-41.

6. Henderson, F. Y. A handbook of softwoods. London: HMSO; 1977.

7. Lawson, E. R. Eastern Redcedar, and American wood. Washington, DC: USDA Forest Service, FS-260; 1985.

8. Little, jr. E. L. Checklist of United States trees (native and naturalized). Washington, DC: USGPO, USDA Forest Service, Ag. Handbook No. 541; 1979.

9. Mitchell, J. and Rook, A. Botanical dermatology: plants and plant products injurious to the skin. Vancouver, BC: Greenglass Ltd.; 1979.

10. Simpson, W. T. Dry kiln operator's manual. Madison, WI: USDA Forest Service, FPL Ag. Handbook No. 188; 1991.

11. Sudworth, G. B. The cypress and juniper trees of the Rocky Mountain region. Washington, DC: USDA, Bulletin No. 207; 1915.

12. Summitt, R. and Sliker, A. CRC handbook of materials science. Vol. 4. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, Inc.; 1980.

13. USDA. Wood handbook: wood as an engineering material. Madison, WI: USDA Forest Service, FPL Ag. Handbook No. 72; 1974.

14. Woods, B. and Calnan, C. D. Toxic woods. British Journal of Dermatology. 1976; 95(13):1-97.