Juniperus indica 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Pinopsida Pinales Cupressaceae

Scientific Name: Juniperus indica Bertol.
Infra-specific Taxa Assessed:
Common Name(s):
English Black Juniper, Wallich's Juniper
Taxonomic Source(s): Farjon, A. 2010. A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2011-01-25
Assessor(s): Farjon, A.
Reviewer(s): Thomas, P. & Adams, R
This species has a large range and is locally common in at least parts of its distribution. As there are no known threats it is assessed as Least Concern. The variety caespitosa, a decumbent high altitude form of Juniperus indica, has been recently recognized in the Monograph of Cupressaceae and Sciadopitys (Farjon 2005), and is likewise classed as Least Concern. It is probably common and widespread in the dry, north-draining high valleys of the Himalayas.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Himalaya, E into high mountains of China. Bhutan; China: W Sichuan, S Xizang  [Tibet], NW Yunnan; India: Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Kashmir; Nepal; N Pakistan; Sikkim.
Countries occurrence:
Bhutan; China (Sichuan, Tibet [or Xizang], Yunnan); India (Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Uttar Pradesh); Nepal; Pakistan
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:7400
Lower elevation limit (metres):3600
Upper elevation limit (metres):4800
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Locally common in at least parts of its range. Some subpopulations in Nepal may be in decline due to harvesting for incense.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:No
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:From upper montane coniferous forest and woodland in pure stands, or with e.g. Abies, Pinus, Cupressus torulosa, or in Betula utilis subalpine woodland, to alpine heath and grassland and into the bare moraines and scree of the niveous zone. The altitudinal range is from 3,600 m to 4,800 m a.s.l. As an understorey shrub or tree in coniferous forest it is often accompanied by J. squamata, Rhododendron spp., Rosa, and Cotoneaster. Above the tree line it can form juniper-rhododendron thickets, grow in Kobresia-Stipa turf with dwarfed alpine shrubs (e.g. Rhododendron, Salix, Juniperus squamata), or occur scattered on moraines and consolidated scree slopes of granite or gneiss or other metamorphic acidic rock, at the highest altitudes exclusively on S-facing slopes. The climate is high montane to alpine with a pronounced monsoon phase delivering heavy precipitation (much as snow) from May to October.

The variety caespitosa is a decumbent high altitude shrub. It occurs in dry valleys on south-facing slopes in open scrubland, on screes, in pioneer forest on river terraces; sometimes also on northwest slopes. Elevation (from GIS): 2,805 to 4,703 m; (from herbarium specimens): 3,600 to 4,800 m. The variety indica is an erect shrub or small tree and tends to occur at lower altitudes.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:No
Generation Length (years):30

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Black Juniper is probably rare in cultivation under either J. wallichiana or J. pseudosabina; the first being a synonym of J. indica and the latter a closely related species from Central Asia. The recently discovered variety J. indica var. caespitosa is a decumbent form suitable as ground cover in rock gardens, but not yet in cultivation. The growth habit of J. indica var. indica is erect, but varies from shrub to small tree. Both forms are commendable for horticulture, but slow growing. In the Himalayas, where Black Juniper is common and widespread, its wood is used for fuel and branches and foliage are burned as incense in Buddhist temples.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): No range wide threats are known although overgrazing may be a problem in some areas. In Nepal subpopulations are fragmented and exploited for incense and firewood. This also occurs in other parts of its range but the impact is uncertain.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Occurs in some protected areas: Sagarmatha National Park and Quomolangma, Shey-Phoksundo, Annapurna, Sagarmatha and Jigme Dorji Reserves.

Citation: Farjon, A. 2013. Juniperus indica. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T42238A2965473. . Downloaded on 15 October 2018.
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