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definition - Nothotsuga

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Nothotsuga

                   
Nothotsuga
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Pinophyta
Class: Pinopsida
Order: Pinales
Family: Pinaceae
Genus: Nothotsuga
Species: N. longibracteata
Binomial name
Nothotsuga longibracteata
(W.C.Cheng) Hu ex C.N.Page

Nothotsuga is a genus of coniferous trees in the family Pinaceae, in many respects intermediate between the genera Keteleeria and Tsuga. It is distinguished from Tsuga by the larger, erect cones with exserted bracts, and (like Keteleeria) male cones in umbels, and from Keteleeria by the shorter leaves and smaller cones. Nothotsuga contains only one species, N. longibracteata, commonly known as the Bristlecone Hemlock, which is found in southeastern China, in southern Fujian, northern Guangdong, northeast Guangxi, northeast Guizhou and southwest Hunan.

It is an evergreen tree reaching 30 m tall. The leaves are flat, needle-like, 1.2-4 cm long and 1-2 mm broad, very similar to those of Tsuga. The cones are very similar to those of Keteleeria but smaller, 2.5-5 cm long, erect, and mature in about 6-8 months after pollination.

It is a very rare tree, endangered in the wild due to historical deforestation, though it is now protected. It was discovered in 1932, and at first treated as Tsuga longibracteata, being classified in its own genus in 1989 when new research indicated how distinct it is from other species of Tsuga.

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