Overview

Distribution

SE Xizang, NW Yunnan [N Myanmar]
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Physical Description

Morphology

Description

Trees to 25 m tall; trunk to 1 m d.b.h.; bark gray-brown, rough, longitudinally splitting; crown pyramidal; branchlets initially red-brown or brown, then darkened in 2nd or 3rd year, glabrous, rarely pubescent when young; winter buds globose, resinous. Leaves spirally arranged, radially spreading ± forward or pectinately arranged in 2 lateral sets, bright dark green, linear, often curved or "S"-shaped, flattened, 1.5-3 cm × 1.7-2.5 mm, stomatal lines in 2 white bands abaxially, resin canals 2, marginal, margin strongly revolute, apex emarginate. Seed cones shortly pedunculate, black at maturity, glaucous, cylindric or ovoid-cylindric, 6-11 × 3-4 cm. Seed scales flabellate-trapeziform, 1.3-1.5 × 1.4-1.8 cm. Bracts exserted, oblong-spatulate, apex with a narrow, usually recurved cusp 3-5 mm. Seeds obovate; wing brown, cuneate-dolabriform. Pollination May, seed maturity Oct.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
This is a species of high elevations in the great mountain ranges of SW China, occurring between 2,400 m and 4,300 m asl, but usually between 3,000 m and 4,000 m, commonly on north-facing slopes. The soil is a grey brown mountain podzol. The climate is extremely wet, with cool summers and cold, snowy winters (annual precipitation ranges from 1,000 mm to 3,000 mm and more). It grows mixed with other conifers, such as Picea likiangensis, P. brachytyla var. brachytyla, or in pure stands towards the tree limit. At lower elevations it is sometimes mixed with Tsuga chinensis, T. dumosa, Juniperus formosana and broad-leaved trees, e.g. Betula albosinensis, Betula platyphylla var. szechuanica, and Quercus semecarpifolia. Abies delavayi, however, is less common with these trees than A. forrestii.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Mountains; 3000-4300 m.
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Abies delavayi

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Abies delavayi

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 1
Specimens with Barcodes: 11
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2011

Assessor/s
Xiang, Q., Rushforth, K. & Carter, G.

Reviewer/s
Thomas, P. & Farjon, A.

Contributor/s

Justification
Based on the status found for all infraspecific taxa under this species, apart from Abies delavayi ssp. fansipanensis, the species as a whole is considered Least Concern.

History
  • 1998
    Lower Risk/least concern
    (Oldfield et al. 1998)
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Population

Population
May be locally common, depending on the variety.

Population Trend
Unknown
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Threats

Major Threats
Logging has affected many areas although with the introduction of a logging ban in 1998 this problem has reduced.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
The Government of China has recently imposed a ban on logging in western China.
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Wikipedia

Abies delavayi

Abies delavayi (Delavay's fir) is a species of fir, native to Yunnan in southwest China and adjoining border areas in southeastern Tibet, far northeastern India, northern Myanmar, and far northwestern Vietnam. It is a high altitude mountain tree, growing at elevations of 3,000–4,000 m (exceptionally down to 2,400 m and up to 4,300 m), often occupying the tree line.[2]

The species is named after its discoverer, Father Pierre Jean Marie Delavay, who collected it at 3,500–4,000 m on the Cangshan Mountains near Dali.[3]

It is a small to medium-sized evergreen tree growing to 7–40 m tall, often less at tree line. The shoots are purple-brown to dark red-brown, glabrous or finely pubescent. The leaves are needle-like, 15–30 mm long and 1–2 mm broad, with a distinctive revolute margin. The upper surface of the leaves is glossy dark green with no stomata, the underside vivid snow-white with the stomata densely covered in white wax; this is thought to be an adaptation to exclude very heavy rain in its monsoon climate.[4] The cones are dark purple-blue, 6–12 cm long and 3–4.5 cm broad, with numerous small scales and exserted bracts; they break up when mature at 6–8 months old to release the winged seeds.

Trees at lower elevation (2,400–3,000 m) differ in having the leaf margin less revolute, and are separated as a variety Abies delavayi var. nukiangensis (Cheng & Fu) Farjon.[2]

Plants in southeastern Tibet have been distinguished as Abies delavayi var. motuoensis Cheng & Fu, differing in paler, densely pubescent shoots.[2]

The Vietnamese population, with a disjunct range on Fansipan (at 3,143 m the highest mountain in Vietnam), is distinct in paler red-brown shoots and the cones having shorter bracts (not exserted), and is separated as a subspecies Abies delavayi subsp. fansipanensis (Q.P.Xiang) Rushforth (syn. Abies fansipanensis Q.P.Xiang).[5]

Delavay's fir is occasionally grown as an ornamental tree, but its successful cultivation is limited to regions with cool summers and high rainfall, such as western Scotland and the Pacific coast of Canada. A semi-dwarf form originating at very high altitude has been selected as a cultivar 'Major Neishe', growing to 3–4 m tall.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Xiang, Q., Rushforth, K. & Carter, G. (2011). "Abies delavayi". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.1. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 14 November 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c A, Farjon (1990). "Pinaceae. Drawings and Descriptions of the Genera". Koeltz Scientific Books. ISBN 3-87429-298-3. 
  3. ^ Franchet, A. (1899). Plantarum Sinensium. J. de Botanique 13: 253-260.
  4. ^ Rushforth, K. (1984). Abies delavayi and A. fabri. Int. Dendrol. Soc. Yearb. 1983: 118-120.
  5. ^ Rushforth, K. (1999). Taxonomic notes on some Sino-Himalayan conifers. Int. Dendrol. Soc. Yearb. 1998: 60-63.
  6. ^ K., Rushforth (1987). "Conifers". Christopher Helm. ISBN 0-7470-2801-X. 
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Notes

Comments

The timber is used for construction, furniture, and wood pulp, and the bark yields tannin.
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