Aromatic Cedar

Botanical Name

Juniperus Virginiana

Other Common Names

Coast juniper, coast red cedar, eastern red juniper, eastern red cedar, juniper, pencil cedar, pencil juniper, red juniper, red cedar, southern juniper, southern red cedar, southern red juniper, Tennessee red cedar, Virginian cedar, Virginian pencil, cedar.


Aromatic Cedar 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

Aromatic Cedar 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.


Aromatic Cedar 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.

Working Properties

Aromatic Cedar 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, holds nails well and has excellent gluing properties.


Fence posts, 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.