The Common juniper (Juniperus communis) is mainly known as a juniper bush. As a cypress species, it is mainly found on dry, rather nutrient-poor, calcareous soils.
The prickly leaves of the common juniper are needle-shaped and up to 15 mm long. The spherical, round fruits are berry cones. Initially greenish, they later turn blue-black and ripen in the 2nd year or even in the 3rd year after fertilisation.
Even in earlier times, people knew about its healing powers, which can be traced back to the essential oils and tannins in its fruit. Today, it still often stands next to graves as a "sentinel". According to popular belief, it makes the transition to the afterlife easier for the souls of the deceased.
The common juniper is widespread in the dry pine forests along the Lech. Here it also occurs as a tree with a height of up to 8 metres. In the rest of Tyrol, tree-like junipers are only known at three other locations. In 1960, the Tyrolean Nature Conservation Act designated these stands as natural monuments (= a natural structure that is to be preserved due to its rarity, uniqueness or beauty or because of its scientific, historical or cultural significance as well as because of the special character it lends to the landscape. If there is a public interest in this, the district administrative authority can declare a natural monument by means of an official decision. - This is in accordance with the Tyrolean Nature Conservation Act 2005) and placed under protection.