We recently moved house in New Jersey and I'm finally getting around to getting the back garden into some kind of shape. There are trees along the perimeter of the property which i assume were planted for privacy. I think they are fir or pine trees. There are no no needles on the lower branches and the upper branches look pretty sparse. The bark looks very pale and is peeling. I'm hoping someone can tell me what is wrong with these trees, and whether they can be saved or is it better to have them removed.


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  • Could you post a closeup of the needles, please? This will help in identifying the trees. Right now, I'm torn between the trees being arbor vitae or junipers, based on the bark.
    – Jurp
    Apr 22, 2020 at 2:30
  • Not an answer. My guess is Eastern Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana) natlands.org/crows-nest-eastern-red-cedars-in-our-forest Better close-up photos are needed though @Chesterfield to confirm.
    – renesis
    Apr 22, 2020 at 3:48
  • I've edited original question to show the needles. Apr 22, 2020 at 12:32

1 Answer 1


I would bet money on Eastern Red Cedar, as commented. Not my choice for landscaping. And you can't grow apples because of cedar/apple rust. And they look relatively normal for cedar( my parent lived in MO and cedars were very common. If one is planted in an open area by itself it will develop more foliage/look more healthy.

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