Gymnosperm Database
Link to jump to start of content Home Topics Bookstore Links Site Map Contact Us



Foliage and cone of var. gracilis (Harkevich and Kachura 1981).


Stand of var. mayriana at Kunashir, Kurile Islands [Vladimir Dinets].


Stand of var. sachalinensis on hill in background, on Shikotan in the Kurile Islands (Larix gmelinii var. japonica in foreground) [Vladimir Dinets] (Vladimir Dinets e-mail 2000.02.01).


Abies sachalinensis in Akan National Park, Hokkaido [Vladimir Dinets, 2006] (click HERE for more photos).


Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional

Conservation status

Abies sachalinensis

(F. Schmidt) Masters 1879

Common names

Sachalin fir (Vidakovic 1991).

Taxonomic notes

Four described varieties, including the type:

A. sachalinensis var. sachalinensis

A. sachalinensis var. gracilis (Kom.) Farjon 1990

A. sachalinensis var. mayriana Miyabe & Kudo 1919

A. sachalinensis var. nemorensis Mayr. 1890


Pinus sachalinensis var. nemorensis (Mayr.) Vossin, Putlitz & Meyer 1913;

A. nemorensis (Mayr.) Miyabe & Kudo 1915;

A. wilsonii Miyabe & Kudo 1919;

A. sachalinensis var. wilsonii (Miyabe & Kudo) Viguié & Gaussen 1929.


I currently have only this description for var. gracilis: Tree to 15 m tall with a dense pyramidal crown. Leaves dark-green, to 3 cm long and 2 mm wide. Cones cylindrical, to 5 cm long. Seeds with one wing (Harkevich and Kachura 1981).

Distribution and Ecology

Russia (Sakhalin, S. Kuril Isls, one small stand on Kamchatka), Japan (Vladimir Dinets e-mail, 2-Jan-1998). Var. gracilis is only known from one small grove (0.2 in Semyachik valley, Eastern Kamchatka (within Kronotsky Zapovednik). Probably introduced by native people few hundred years ago (Harkevich and Kachura 1981). Hardy to Zone 5 (cold hardiness limit between -28.8°C and -23.3°C) (Bannister and Neuner 2001).

Wilson (1916) says it is abundant in Hokkaido, occasionally in pure stands but usually with Picea jezoensis and deciduous hardwoods, or, in the northern part of the island, with Picea glehnii. In Sakhalin (which at the time was Japanese, south of 50°N), he found that it "covers enormous areas" with Picea jezoensis and Larix gmelinii var. japonica, chiefly on low mountain slopes.

Big tree

Wilson (1916) says the largest trees he found were "on the slopes of Shiribeshi-san near the town of Kutchan up to 1000 m. altitude" and were up to 250 cm girth (about 80 cm dbh) and 30 m tall.







Harkevich, S. and N. Kachura. 1981. Rare Plant Species of The Soviet Far East and Their Conservation. Nauka, Moscow (in Russian).

Masters, M.T. 1879. The Gardeners' Chronicle ser. 2, 12:588, fig. 97.

See also

Farjon ( 1990, 2010).

Iwatsuki et al. (1995).

Last Modified 2012-11-28