Rocky Mountain Juniper (RMJ) in Southern California

I’d like to know if anyone has been successful (or not) with Rocky Mountain Junipers in the Southern California climate for several years. And if so, are there any nuances to wintering them since they won’t experience the same level of winter dormancy as they used to. I used to live in Boulder, CO and brought several RMJs with me when I moved to Santa Barbara, California (Zone 10a) last year. I wintered them over at Mt. Pinos (6000) last year but due to logistical hassles I’m not doing that this year. I’m thinking/hoping that an RMJ in a bonsai pot will be find in Southern California or a similar climate but would like to hear from someone with a few years of successful experience. Thanks!


Let’s us know how it turns out. I live in southern Cali myself. I also wonder if rmj do ok here.


I remember in some stream that Ryan discusses how either the root system or the foliage determines the hardiness and I remember thinking “Oh so a RMJ would do fine if I grafted something like Sabina foliage onto it?” Or something similar. It also might’ve been for pine…

Hopefully someone else remembers what I’m talking about.

Based on my conversations with Ryan, the foliage of pines determines the winter dormancy needs. Therefore I am working with him to graft my ponderosas over to JBP.

I’m getting the impression that the RMJ will be OK in this warmer climate and no below 28 F dormancy. There is another Mirai student in Oxford, CA who has had some RMJs for a few years and he is not seeing any declines.