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Abies yuanbaoshanensis

Abies yuanbaoshanensis - Yuanbaoshan fir description


Scientific name: Abies yuanbaoshanensis  Y.J.Lu & L.K.Fu  1980

Synonyms: Abies fabri subsp. yuanbaoshanensis (Y.J.Lu & L.K.Fu) Silba

Common names: Yuanbaoshan fir (English), Yuanbaoshan lengshan (Chinese)



Trees to 25 m tall, d.b.h. to 0.6 m (or more); trunk monopodial, straight, columnar, terete; crown probably like Abies forrestii (not described). Bark smooth at first, becoming ridged and grooved, divided into small plates in old trees. Branches of first order long, spreading horizontally; branches of second order spreading and ascending. Branchlets slender, firm, yellowish brown or light brown, becoming light or dark brown, glabrous; leaf scars circular. Vegetative buds ovoid-conical, very resinous; bud scales reddish brown, persisting several years. Leaves spirally arranged, densely set, subradially spreading above shoot, the lower leaves spreading laterally, the upper leaves shortest, on coning shoots assurgent or erect, 1-2.7 cm long (leaves of young trees longer: 3-3.8 cm, usually more pectinately arranged in two rows of equal length), longest in the middle portion of shoot, 1.8-2.5 mm wide, twisted or curved at base, linear or ligulate-linear, flattened; margins (in sicco) revolute, with a median groove above, dark green above, two very white bands below; apex obtuse to slightly emarginate. Stomata absent above, in two broad bands separated by a midrib below. Resin canals 2, marginal, small. Pollen cones solitary, axillary, on short branches, oblong cylindrical, 1-1.5 cm long, yellow. Seed cones lateral, erect, short pedunculate to almost sessile, broad ovoid-cylindric, short, with slightly narrowed, obtuse apex, 8-9 cm long, 4.5-5 cm wide, green or yellowish green when immature, maturing to light yellowish brown, becoming pale (yellowish) brown when ripe; cone rachis persistent, fusiform or conical, brown. Seed scales cuneate-flabellate, length × width at mid cone 2 × 2.2 cm; surface smooth, with thickened central portion of apical part, exposed part densely greyish white puberulent; upper margin entire, rounded to almost truncate, slightly incurved; lower margins auriculate; base short pedicellate. Bracts large, broad oblong, widest in the middle (9 mm), with rounded, erose-denticulate upper margins and a small cusp, 2.5-2.8 cm long, of the same colour as the seed scales, apical part 6-7 mm wide, reflexed, distinctly exserted. Seeds cuneate-oblong or obovate-oblong, 10 × 4 mm, resinous, dark red brown; seed wings cuneate-dolabriform, with a truncate apex, slightly longer than the seeds (9-11 × 8-10 mm), shining light brown.

A relatively recently discovered species confined to Yuanbao Shan in Rongshui Xian county (N Guangxi, China) which is outside the general range of fir species. The whole population is within an area of 4 ha; 1,700–2,050 m.


Conservation Status

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered




Attribution from: Conifers Garden