Conifers Garden - Online Tree Nursery

Torreya jackii

Torreya jackii
  • Click to enlarge


This product is currently out of stock

Product Information

Scientific name: Torreya jackii   Chun  1925

Synonyms: -

Common names: Longleaf torreya, Weeping torreya, Jack's nutmeg-yew, Jack torreya, Chang Ye Fei Shu (Chinese)



Shrub, or tree to 12 m tall, with one or more trunks to 0.2(-0.4) m in diameter. Bark light brown when fresh, weathering ashy gray to dark gray, flaking in thick scales and seldom becoming furrowed. Crown low and broadly dome-shaped, with thin, upwardly angled branches bearing pairs of horizontal or drooping branchlets densely clothed with slightly separated foliage. Twigs passing though greenish brown to shiny reddish brown in their first and second years. Leaves strongly and pleasantly aromatic when crushed, (2.5-)3.5-7(-9) cm long (to 23 cm in juveniles), (2.5-)3-4 mm wide, stiff and drooping, shiny yellowish green, dark green, or bluish green and with low ridges flanking the midrib above, with deeply sunken silvery to grayish white, or later brown, stomatal brands beneath. Individual needles curved away from the twig tip, often twisted, widest about a third of the way from the base, tapering very gradually to the narrowly triangular tip with a sharp, fragile point 0.5-1.5 mm long, and more abruptly to the roundly wedge-shaped, slightly asymmetrical base on a  very short, twisted petiole 1-2 mm long. Pollen cones pale yellow, about 6-7 mm long and 4-5 mm across. Seeds with aril reddish yellow with a thin waxy film, 2-3 cm long and 1.5-2.5 cm in diameter. Female gametophyte tissue inside the shiny yellowish brown stony layer deeply wrinkled.

With a fairy continuous distribution in southern and western Zhejiang and adjacent northern Fujian and northeastern Jiangxi, eastern China. Scattered in the understory of monsoonal subtropical broad-leaved evergreen forests or secondary woodlands along streamsides and on protected slopes; (250-)400-1,000 m.


Conservation Status

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered

Fu and Jin (1992) determined the conservation status of T. jackii as Vulnerable (VU) in China Plant Red Data Book 1, but the Conifer Specialist Group of IUCN SSC (Farjon and Page, 1999) changed it to Endangered (EN). This species occurs very locally and has been in steep decline, especially due to destruction of its forest habitat for expanding agriculture (crops). Special reserves to protect this species in the wild are urgently needed. Natural regeneration is hampered by fragmentation of populations. Occurs in at least one nature reserve - Jiangshi Nature Reserve in Fujian province, declared especially to protect this species. Occurs in several other reserves across its range (e.g. Yukeng Nature Reserve in Zhejiang province). The fragrant wood of this species is used to make agricultural implements, utensils and handicrafts; the wood is also used for firewood and chemicals are extracted from the leaves and bark for treating cancer. Outside China T. jackii is not in general cultivation and restricted to a few botanic gardens and/or private collections.



  • 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.

Product CodeTORUSXH49

This field is required.