Cupressus dupreziana

2 L 15 - 20 cm


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Product Code: CUPCLFP724

Scientific name: Cupressus dupreziana  A.Camus  1926

Synonyms: Cupressus lereddei Gaussen, Cupressus sempervirens var. dupreziana (A.Camus) Silba, Tassilicyparis dupreziana (A.Camus) A.V.Bobrov & Melikyan

Common names: Saharan cypress, Tuareg cypress, Tassili cypress



Trees to 16(-20) m tall; monopodial; trunk to 2-3 m in diameter. Bark eventually becoming thick, deeply fissured, hard, grey-brown, exfoliating slowly in small strips. Branches long, spreading or ascending, sometimes fastigiated, forming a conical or pyramidal, or in old trees sympodial, irregular and broad, dense crown. Foliage branches spreading or drooping-pendulous, slender, ultimate branchlets irregularly spreading or (sub)pendulous, subterete to slightly flattened in cross section, 1-1.5(-2) mm diam., slightly torose,  persistent. Leaves covering branchlets decussate, imbricate, decurrent, (nearly) monomorphic, scale-like, with facials equal in size to laterals, on ultimate branchlets 1-1.2 mm long and rhombic, slightly gibbous, with appressed obtuse or acute apex (on whip shoots up to 5 mm long); margins minutely denticulate-hyaline; glands on all scale leaves (most conspicuous on facials; stomata few, scattered primarily on margins near leaf bases; leaf colour lustrous greyish green or glaucous green, often covered in thick cuticular wax. Pollen cones solitary and terminal on ultimate branchlets, ovoid-oblong, 4-6 × 2-3 mm; microsporophylls 12-16, decussate, peltate, bearing 3-4 abaxial pollen sacs near the lower margin. Seed cones mostly solitary on lateral branches, terminal, maturing in 2 growing seasons, persistent, subglobose to ovoid-oblong when closed, 15-27 × 13-21 mm, maturing to light brown with mostly parting scales. Seeds 6-8(-10) on each scale, closely packed, flattened, 5-6 × 4-5 mm, dark brown with whitish hilum at base; wings 2 on opposite sides, more or less equal in size and shape, 1-2 mm wide.

Algeria, Morocco; in Algeria restricted to one very limited area in the Sahara; 900-2,200 m.


Conservation Status

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered

(Cupressus dupreziana has two varieties: the typical variety in Algeria and Cupressus dupreziana var. atlantica in Morocco. Both have been assessed as Critically Endangered. In Algeria the assessment is based on the C criterion with a total known population of less than 250 individuals and a predicted 25% decline within the next generation (ca. 25 years). The extent of occurrence is estimated to be less than 1,000 km2. The area of occupancy has not been calculated but is highly unlikely to be more than 250 km2, given the small size of the population and its limited habitat. In Morocco the assessment is based on the B criterion with a limited extent of occurrence (ca. 40 km2), a single location and continuing decline. The actual area of occupancy is estimated to be 14.56 km2 while the total population is estimated to be at least 6,500 trees. In addition there has been a recent decline in the area of occupancy of 73%. In both cases there is a continuing decline in the quality of habitat. On the basis of this information, the species is assessed as Endangered under the B2 criterion where the total area of occupancy is less than 500 km2, there are fewer than five locations and there is a continuing decline in at least the quality of habitat. It is also assessed as Endangered under the A2 criterion on the basis that the 73% decline in the AOO of Cupressus dupreziana

 var. atlantica in Morocco is the equivalent of a 70-73% population reduction of the species)



Farjon, A. (2010). A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.

Eckenwalder, J.E. (2009) Conifers of the World: The Complete Reference. Timber Press, Portland.

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Cambridge, UK /Gland, Switzerland


Copyright © Aljos Farjon, James E. Eckenwalder, IUCN, Conifers Garden. All rights reserved.


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