There’s one piece of nature that encapsulates everything Bermuda has to offer. Cue: the Juniperus Bermudiana, or the Bermuda cedar, a species of juniper endemic to Bermuda. These evergreen trees grow up to 49 feet tall and two feet thick and have been utilised in creating many things in the area, from arts and architecture to furniture and gifts. It plays an important role in Bermudian craftwork. Known for its sweet yet heavy aroma and reddish timber, the Bermuda cedar even plays a role in the archipelago’s history. English settlers used the wood for building homes, churches, jails and shipbuildings, as well as for interior woodworking and furniture construction. As far as medicinal purposes, the cones have been used to prepare cedarberry syrup in order to treat various ailments like toothaches and coughs, and the shoots have been boiled to create elixirs good for lowering fevers. But there’s more: The wood repels moths and fleas and prevents mildew, so it’s not uncommon to find the wood used as lining for closets and drawers, too. Due to legislative restrictions, you’ll be hard-pressed to find this Renaissance wood elsewhere. So keep your eyes peeled for Bermuda cedar–filled landmarks, like the Mayflower House, the Camden House and the Tucker House. According to the Bermuda National Trust, the Verdmont House contains the colony’s finest collection of antique Bermuda cedar furniture. Now a sign of wealth as the wood is so scarce and expensive, you’ll surely spot a piece of history when you come across Bermuda cedar.
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