Conifers Garden - Online Conifer Nursery


Falcatifolium taxoides

Falcatifolium taxoides - New Caledonian sickle pine
  • Falcatifolium taxoides - New Caledonian sickle pine - Click to enlarge
  • Falcatifolium taxoides - New Caledonian sickle pine - Click to enlarge

Scientific name: Falcatifolium taxoides   (Ad. Brongniart & Grisebach) de Laubenfels  1969

Synonyms: Dacrydium taxoides Brongn. & Gris, Nageia taxoides (Brongn. & Gris) Kuntze, Pinus falciformis Parl., Podocarpus taxodioides Carrière, Podocarpus taxodioides var. gracilis Carrière        

Common names: New Caledonian sickle pine



Shrub, or tree to 15 m tall, with trunk to 0.2 m in diameter. Bark thin, smooth, light reddish brown, weathering light gray and flaking sparingly. Crown conical to dome-shaped, open, with slender horizontal to gently rising branches bearing alternating branchlets densely clothed with foliage. Leaves not touching or slightly overlapping to crowded along the twigs, strictly in two rows or more loosely so or even radiating all around the twigs, shiny bright green on the side facing up and white with wax on the side facing down, (0.3-)1-2(-3) cm long, (2-)2.5-4(-6) mm wide. Individual needles fairly parallel-sided or inconspicuously widest near or before the middle, curved away from the twig at the base but straight from there and usually not curving forward at the tip, tapering very gradually and then more abruptly to the rounded, blunt tip and more abruptly to the asymmetrically wedge-shaped base on a short but distinct petiole. Midrib scarcely noticeable. Pollen cones 1.5-2.5 cm long and 1.5-2 mm across. Seed cones with a podocarpium 4-5 mm long, the seed 6-7 mm long, black at maturity. Perhaps the most notable feature of New Caledonian sickle pine is that it is the sole host of Coral pine (Parasitaxus usta), the only known parasitic conifer, whose lurid purple stems can be found sprouting up from the ground around trunks of its host.

Endemic to and found along the whole length of New Caledonia except the northernmost tip. Scattered among hardwoods and other conifers in the understory of montane rain forests on soils derived both from serpentine and from granitic substrates; (100-)800-1,200(1,400) m.


Conservation Status

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern

This species is widely distributed throughout the montane areas of New Caledonia. Although some areas have been affected by mining and fire, there is no evidence of decline and no specific threats, hence this species is listed as Least Concern.

Usually a small tree in the understory of mid to upper montane evergreen forests on both serpentine and non-serpentine soils.

No specific threats have been identified for this species at the current time.

This species has been recorded from several protected areas such as Montagne des Sources and Mt Panie.



  • 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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