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Abies chensiensis

Abies chensiensis
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Product Information

Scientific name: Abies chensiensis Van Tieghem  1892

Synonims: -

Common names: Shensi fir, Chinese River fir, Northern Giant fir, Shaanxi fir, Qinling lengshan (Chinese)



Tree to 40(-50) m tall, with trunk to 2 m in diameter. Bark dark gray, splitting into long ridges with age. Branchlets hairless or with a few hairs at first in the grooves between the leaf bases. Buds 7-10 mm long, with a thin coating of resin. Needles arranged to the sides in several rows on lower branches, the upper rows of leaves shorter and angled forward, those of branches with seed cones curving upward above the twigs, 1.5-5(-7) cm long, shiny bright green above, the tip forked on young trees, becoming notched on lower branches, and finally pointed on branches with seed cones. Pollen cones 5-10 mm long. Seed cones cylindrical or elongate egg-shaped, (7-)8-11(-14) cm long, 3-5 cm across, green when young, maturing reddish brown. Seed body 8-10 mm long, the wing about as long.

Central and southwestern China (Gansu, Hubei, Sichuan, Xizang (Tibet), Yunnan). In mixed forests with other conifers and a few hardwoods on deep rich soils of mountain valleys and protected slopes; 2,300-3,000(-3,500) m. The climate is cold and moist, with annual precipitation between 1,000 and 2,000 mm.


Conservation Status

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern

This species has an extent of occurrence of more than 20,000 km2, and has a large population and although there are past and ongoing threats, it is listed here as Least Concern. It is a rare species, usually mixed with Picea spp., Abies fargesii var. sutchuenensis, Tsuga chinensis, Larix potaninii at high elevations, and Betula spp. at lower elevations; also as a pure forest in Tsin-ling Shan (Wang 1961). Logging and deforestation have depleted this species to some extent in some parts of its range. The Chinese Government has recently imposed a logging ban on old growth forest in western China.



  • 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 CodeABI5WJ6P94
Weight1.5 kg
Height15 - 20 cm

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