Juniperus scopulorum
family: Cypress (Cupressaceae)
> vé'evėšéstótó'e, "fine coniferous tree"
Rocky mountain red cedar (rocky mountain red juniper, Colorado juniper) is a tree, 5 to 12 m tall, with conical or irregularly rounded treetop begining from bottom. It has slender, slightly foursquare shoots. The leaves are imbricate, dark green, yellow-green or ash-grey. The seed cones ("cedar berries") are blue, pruinose, round to flattened, 6 to 8 mm long. They ripen next year. Rocky mountain red cedar grows on dry, rocky slopes. It ranges from British Columbia to southwesten Alberta; in the Western USA, east to North Dakota, eastern foothills of the Rocky Mountains, and western Texas; south to Sonora and Coahuila. For the Northern Cheyenne people, the western foothills of the Bighorn Mountains north of Lovell are the nearest area where rocky mountain red cedars grow (Tallbull 1993: 27).


Juniperus virginiana
family: Cypress (Cupressaceae)
> vé'evėšéstótó'e, "fine coniferous tree"
Eastern red cedar (eastern red juniper, Virginia juniper, pencil cedar) is small or medium tall tree, 12 to 30 m. It has conical, in old age round, treetop. Its bark is reddish brown to grey, peeling off in stripes. The tree has slender, foursquare shoots. The juvenile leaves are needle-like, 4 to 6 mm long. The mature leaves are imbricate. It blossoms in April to May. Its fruits are berry-like seed cones, 6 mm long, dark purple-blue, pruinose. They ripen in August to November at that year. The heartwood is light, not very hard, compact, fragrant, fine-grained, reddish to brownish-red. The sapwood is white. Eastern red cedar grows on prairies, slopes,  pastures, and in forests sometimes. It ranges in the Eastern USA to southeastern Wyoming, eastern Colorado, and east-central Texas. 


Juniperus communis var. depressa
family: Cypress (Cupressaceae)
heškóvėšéstótó'e, "thorny coniferous tree"
Common juniper (ground juniper) is slow-growing shrub, 0,5–2 m tall, in North America. It has triangular, brownish shoots. The shrubs are dioecious, rarely unisexual. The male plant has slender, round treetop. The female plant has wide-branched treetop. The male blossoms are yellowish, egg-like seed cones. The female blossoms look like green buds. The fruits are berry-like seed cones, 6–8 mm long, at first green, mature blue-black, bluish pruinose. They ripen next year. The wood is light, compact, ductile, and durable. Common juniper likes light. It is not exacting on the soil type. It grows on dry slopes frequently. It ranges in the Eastern USA to west Nebraska and in the Rocky Mountains from Alaska to New Mexico. It grows on dry sites in all eastern Montana too (Tallbull 1993: 27). Juniperus communis is native to the Czech Republic also. However, the European variety is tree-like, taller, up to 12 m.                                 


Juniperus horizontalis
family: Cypress (Cupressaceae)
Creeping cedar (creeping juniper) is decumbent to ground shrub, 20–80 cm tall, with long branches and erect to horizontally projecting, dense shoots. It often forms large overgrowths. Juvenile leaves are needle-like, 2–6 mm long, slantwise projecting. Older leaves are imbricate, bluish-green to grayish-green, reddish in the fall and early spring. Seed cones are blue, greyish pruinose, round, 6– 8 mm long. Creeping juniper grows on the sands and the rocks, along the streams frequently. It ranges in the area of the Great Lakes, in southern Canada and neighbouring states of the USA, from Minnesota to British Columbia.
The Cheyenne people respected cedars much, not only for its frequent and wide usage. According to Mr. Charles Sitting Man, Northern Cheyenne, the cedar enjoys a great favor of Ma'hēō'o because it remains green all year round and it seems not to grow older. It represents the youth and it plays an important role in many ceremonies and rituals of purification (Hart 1976: 78). The Cheyenne hang green cedar twigs in their homes for protection (Schwartz 1989: 50). In Chyenne beliefs, green, unripe cedar seed cones are connected with sacred green hailstones bringing life to the earth in the spring. So, it is beneficial to use them for healing. Furthermore, the seed cones appear frosted which make them an element of the Cheyenne green-white symbolical complex having connection with changing of the seasons (See sage, Artemisia ludoviciana). The Cheyenne distinguish two kinds of cedars: with red wood and with white wood. According to the Cheyenne, the berries of "red" cedar are beneficial to the troubles whose cause lies in the blood. The berries of "white" cedar cure the troubles which the white of eyes and the teeth exhibit (Moore 1974: 171).
The Cheyennes believe in cleansing effect of the cedar leaves. It serves in many ceremonies. For example, it is used for censing the participants, the buffalo skull and the robe during hestȯsanestȯtse or hoxéhevȯhomó'hestȯtse, the Sun Dance Ceremony (Hart 1981: 5). The cedar is used in the sweat lodge too. The leaves are poured on hot stones (Curtis 1911: 117; Košťák 2002). During the night peyote meeting, a person called „cedar man“ sits on left side of the leader of this ceremony. He cares for burning cedar twigs on live charcoals (Densmore 1936: 86). Mr. Wesley Whiteman, a Northern Cheyenne Contrary and healer, burned dry cedar leaves upon the stove every morning and evening as a protection against misfortune and malevolent powers causing sickness or fitful sleep (Schwartz 1989: 59).
The Cheyenne women used cedar leaves to purify menstruating girls. When a girl began to menstruate first time a specified ceremony was held. She unbraided her hairs, took off clothes, bathed and elderly women painted her body red. They put sweetgrass, white sage, and cedar leaves upon live charcoal. The girl bent and wrapped with robe over the sacred smoke to purify whole her body. After that she leaved the home tipi accompanied by her grandmother and spent four days in a special small tipi nearby. On those four days, her grandmother repeated the incense ritual. This time, the girl wrapped in the robe and she stood stridden over the smoke. Menstruating woman broke medicine of warriors. To eliminate this influence, sweetgrass, sage, and cedar leaves were burned again (Grinnell 1923 I: 130-1). According to Mrs. Mary Fisher, a Northern Cheyenne herbalist, the cedar leaves were often burned to help in pushing forward the delivery (Hart 1981: 5). During certain healing ritual, which helped people affected with paralysis, the patient was smoked over a fire of cedar twigs (Marriott 1956: 24).
The Cheyenne believed lightning never strikes on cedar because „a power exists between it and Thunder“ (Hart 1981: 5). The Cheyenne burn the cedar leaves upon live charcoals during a great storm. They say the spirits like its nice smell and the sweet smoke calms stormed powers (Schukies 1993: 33). The smoke of cedar leaves is about to reduce the fear of thunder and lightning. Along with the burning of cedar, a ceremony was often performed at which tobacco, bearberry leaves, and dogwood inner bark were smoked (Hart 1976: 78–9). Some people, pursued by the fear of thunder and lightning, had to undergo special sacrificial ceremony around a solitary cedar (Powell 1969: 366, 375–81).
The Cheyenne prepared infusion of cedar twigs and seed cones for colds, constant cough, tickling of the throat, tonsilitis, pneumonia, and high fever. Steam from the infusion was used as a vaporizer in fever and colds. Seed cones was chewed in colds for direct relief. Beside, the infusion was good sedativum for calming hyperactive people. Also, it was given to women in childbed if the delivery was complicated (Grinnell 1923 II: 170; Hart 1976: 79; Hart 1981: 5).
The Cheyenne make flutes from the wood of rocky mountain red cedar and eastern red cedar. They call them vé'evėšéstótó'etȧhpeno ("fine coniferous tree flute"). Some flutes was ordinary, connected with no medicine, and everyone with necessery knowledge and skill could carve them. However, there were one or two men among the Cheyenne who gained a special medicine and breathed great power in their flutes. It is said a blue light emanated from their instruments in the night. Such flutes managed to charm girls at long distance and made them return love. Young men fallen in love sought these flute makers. The cedar flute is made from split cedar chunk 45–60 cm long, sometimes longer. Both of halves are hollowed out, stuck together, surfaced, and wound with sinews or buckskin thongs. With red-hot thick wire, four to six holes are burnt in the flute. Formerly, the flutes were decorated with quilled strips which encircled the flute by mouthpiece and between the holes. Later, it was replaced with bead strings. The nog overlaped the slot used to be carved in shape of animal, often horse, deer, elk, or bear. The flute was ended with carving of snake or duck head (Grinnell 1923 I: 204–5; Little Chief and Gatschet 1891: sheet no. 3; Schwartz 1989: 110–5).
The Cheyenne knowledge of making and playing flute is still alive. Among the Northern Cheyenne people, it was keeped by John Stands in Timber, Douglas Glenmore and famous flute makers Turkey Leg and his nephew Grover Wolf Voice or Red Elk (Mò'ȯhma'aestse). Lee Lone Bear and his trainee Phillip Whiteman Jr. assumed the flute medicine from them. Joseph Fire Crow, a young Northern Cheyenne musician, takes up the Cheyenne tradition of flute playing (Fire Crow 2000; Schwartz 1989: 111; phillip­white­man­­te.html).
In 1800s, the Cheyenne men sought after the wood of rocky mountain red cedar for making bows. They traveled on the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in present Colorado and Wyoming where this red cedar grows and they chose small erect tree or they split log from some bigger tree. Heartwood wasn’t used (Grinnell 1923 I: 173). From straight red cedar branches, the Cheyenne warriors made shafts of lances probably. The Cheyenne lance was a stabbing weapon and it wasn’t throwed (Little Chief and Gatschet 1891: sheet no. 24; Moore 1996: 117).
The Cheyenne bands living on the southern plains used red cedar trunks for tipi poles instead of poles from lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) which ranges more northerly. The red cedar poles were heavier than the pine poles but stronger and more resistant to rotting at the base (Moore 1996: 36).
> literature