1.type and sole genus of Sciadopityaceae; Japanese umbrella pines
definition of Wikipedia
Temporal range: 230–0 Ma
Siebold & Zucc.
(Thunb.) Siebold & Zucc.
The Koyamaki (Sciadopitys verticillata), or Japanese Umbrella-pine, is a unique conifer endemic to Japan. It is the sole member of the family Sciadopityaceae and genus Sciadopitys, a living fossil with no close relatives, and known in the fossil record for about 230 million years.
It is an evergreen tree that can grow 15-27m tall, with brown main shoots bearing whorls of 7–12 cm long flexible green cladodes that look like, and perform the function of, leaves but are actually composed of stem tissues; occasionally, a cladode will be forked and produce a bud in the 'v' of the fork. The cones are 6–11 cm long, mature in about 18 months, and have flattish scales that open to release the seeds.
It is a very attractive tree and is popular in gardens, despite its slow growth rate and high cost.
Infrared microspectroscopy has identified conifers of the family Sciadopityaceae as the principal source of Baltic amber rather than as previously thought members of the families Araucariaceae and Pinaceae.
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