Family • Cuppressaceae - Juniperus chinensis L. - CHINESE JUNIPER - Yuan bai

Scientific names

Juniperus chinensis L.
Juniperus barbadensis Thunb.
Juniperus dimorpha Roxb.
Juniperus sinensis J. F. Gmel.
Sabina chinensis (L.) Antoine
Yuan bai (Chin.)

Common names

Chinese juniper (Engl.)
Chinese pyramid juniper (Engl.)

Other vernacular names

CZECH: Jalovec cinsky.
DUTCH: Chinese jeneverbes.
FRENCH: genévrier de Chine.
GERMANY: China-Wacholder, Chinesische Wacholder, Chinesischer Sadebaum.
HUN: Kínai boróka.
JAPAN: Ibuki, Ibuki-byakyshin, Byakushin, Kamakura-byakushin.
KOREA: Kong nam somg, Hyang-na-mu.
RUSSIAN: Mozhzhevel’nik kitajskij plakuchij.
SPANISH: Sabina de China, Sabina de jardin.

Juniper is a dioceious evergreen tree growing to a height of 15 to 20 meters. Leavers are opposite and obtuse, dark green, needle-like and spiny when young, adult ones are scale-like. Female cones are subglobose, 5 centimeters in diameter, with 2 seeds.


– Cultivated and grows in Baguio gardens.
– Does not thrive well the in lowlands.
– Widespread in temperate countries.
– Native to northeast Asia. Found in China, Mongolia, Japan, and Korea.

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings


(1) Anti-Metastatic Activity of Juniperus chinensis Extract by Galectin-3 Inhibition / Lee, Keyong Ho ; Rhee, Ki-Hyeong / The Korean Journal of Food And Nutrition, Volume 25, Issue ,4, 2012, pp.713-718

(2) Anti-obesity effects of Juniperus chinensis extract are associated with increased AMP-activated protein kinase expression and phosphorylation in the visceral adipose tissue of rats. / Kim SJ, Jung JY, Kim HW, Park T. / Biol Pharm Bull. 2008 Jul;31(7):1415-21.

(3) Essential oil composition of Juniperus chinensis from the plains of northern India / V. K. Raina, S. K. Srivastava, K. V. Syamsundar / Flavour and Fragrance Journal, 12/2004; 20(1):57 – 59. / DOI:10.1002/ffj.1366

(4) Free radical scavengers from the heartwood of Juniperus chinensis. / Lim JP, Song YC, Kim JW, Ku CH, Eun JS, Leem KH, Kim DK. / Arch Pharm Res. 2002 Aug;25(4):449-52.


(6) LIGNANS FROM LEAVES OF JUNIPERUS CHINENSIS / JIM-MIN FANG, CHING-KUO LEE and Yu-SHIA CHENG* / PhytochemistryV,ol. 31, No. 10, pp. 3659 -3661, 1992

(7) Widdrol from Juniperus chinensis induces apoptosis in human colon adenocarcinoma HT29 Cells / Hyun-Ju Kwon, Eun-Woo Lee, Yun-Kyung Hong, Hee-Jung Yun, Byung-Woo Kim / Biotechnology and Bioprocess Engineering, February 2010, Volume 15, Issue 1, pp 167-172

(8) Five New cis-Himachalane-Type Sesquiterpenes from the Heartwood of Juniperus chinensis var. tsukusiensis / Lung-Lin SHIU, Wen-Ching CHEN, and Yueh-Hsiung KUO* / Chem. Pharm. Bull. 47(4) 557—560 (1999)

(9) Northeast Asia / Juniperus chinensis / / Takeatsu Kimura / Google Books

(10) Juniperus chinensis / Plants For A Future


-Studies have yielded sterols (sitosterol, campesterol), lignins, polyprenols (buttuprenol), hydrocarbons, polyphenols, essential oils (sabinyl acetate, bornyl acetate), monoterpenes, and fatty acids.
– Study of leaf volatile oil yielded thirty-three components. Major components were sabinene (19.8%), elemol (18.6%), bornyl acetate (17.5%), and limonene (14.2%).
– n-BuOH fraction yielded quercetin, naringenin, taxifolin, aromadendrin, and isoquercitrin.
– Heartwood yielded a bisnorditerpene, 14 diterpenes, and 12 sesquiterpenes, together with a new diterpene (15-hydroxylabda-8,11E,13E-trien-19-oic acid), and three new sesquiterpenes (cedr-3-en-15-01, junipercedrol and cc-longipinen-12-01).
– Leaves yielded umbelliferone, 13 lignans, and an unusual compound 2-(3,4 methylenedioxyphenyl) propane-1,3-diol.
– Study of heartwood yielded five new cis-Himachalane-type sesquiterpenes from J. chinensis var. tsukusiensis: ar-hi- machalene, 2-himachalen-6-ol, 3-himachalen-6-ol, 2a,6a-epoxy-3-himachalene, 2a,6a-epoxyhi- machalan-3b-ol, and chinensiol.


– A popular Korean folk medicine considered anti-tumor, antibacterial, antifungal, abortifacient, anti-platelet, vasorelaxant, and antiviral.

Parts used
Stems, fruits, leaves, roots.

– No reported folkloric medicinal use in the Philippines.
– In China, used for common colds, pulmonary tuberculosis, urinary infections, rheumatic arthritis. Liquor brewed from fresh leaves is used as tonic and to treat coughs with bleeding.
– In Korea, used for dysentery, hemorrhage, leukorrhea.
– Stems used in treatment of parasitic skin problems.
– Fruit used for convulsions, excessive sweating and hepatitis.
– Root used for burns and scals.
– Resin, mixed with resin of Pinus species, used as resolvent on tumors.

A photo of Dragon Pine Leaf Macro(Juniperus chinensis).This photo was taken at my graden.
Study Findings
• Anti-Metastatic / Galectin-3 Inhibition: Study evaluated the anti-metastatic effect of J. chinensis extract in a mouse model bearing colon 26-M3.1 lung carcinoma. The extract showed significant anti-metastatic activity. Results show J. chinensis to be a potent inhibitor of galectin-3 expression, and presents a promise for use in inhbiting metastases induced by elevated expression of galectin-3.
• Anti-Obesity Effect: Study evaluated the protective effect of J. chinensis hot water extract against high fat diet-induced obesity and its molecular mechanisms in the visceral adipose tissue of rats. Results showed an anti-obesity effect in the rodent model with HFD-induced obesity through an enhanced gene transcription of the uncoupling protein as well as elected AMPK protein expression and phosphorylation in the visceral adipose tissue.
• Leaf Volatile Oil: Study of leaf volatile oil yielded thirty-three components representing 94.8% of the oil. Major components were sabinene (19.8%), elemol (18.6%), bornyl acetate (17.5%), and limonene (14.2%).
• Free Radical Scavenging: Study evaluated the antioxidant activity of J. chinensis using DPPH assay. A methanolic extract of heartwood showed strong antioxidant activity.
• Widdrol / Anti-Cancer / Antiproliferative / Apoptotic: Study reported the cytotoxic activity and the apoptotic activity of widdrol extracted from J. chinensis against the human colon adenocarcinoma cell line HT29. Treatment of HT29 cells with various concentrations of widdrol showed inhibition of growth and dose-dependent induction of apoptosis.

Seeds in the cybermarket.