The Gymnosperm Database


Distribution of species (redrawn from Farjon 1989).


Young female cone of K. davidiana [C.J. Earle].


Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional


Carrière 1866

Common names

油杉属 you shan shu (Wu and Raven 1999).

Taxonomic notes

Syn: Abietia A.H. Kent 1900. Type species: K. fortunei (Andr. Murray) Carrière.

In 1862, Murray described some specimens sent by Robert Fortune to England as Picea fortunei. A year later the species was transferred to Abies, and thence (in 1866) to Keteleeria, named by Carrière for a French nurseryman. Over time, 14 species and 1 variety have been described (Farjon 1990). Farjon (1989) reduced this number to the three species treated here:


Evergreen trees with a broad crown and long, irregular branches. Bark longitudinally fissured. Branchlets weakly ridged and grooved with poorly defined pulvini and small, circular leaf scars; short branchlets absent. Leaves spirally and usually pectinately arranged, occasionally almost radially spreading, linear to lanceolate, flattened, midvein raised on both sides, stomatal lines usually all abaxial, in 2 bands separated by midvein, vascular bundle 1, resin canals 2, sublateral, marginal. Pollen cones lateral or terminal, 4-8 in umbellate clusters, arising from a single bud; pollen 2-saccate. Seed cones terminal, solitary, erect, conical-cylindric, maturing in 1st year; rachis breaking off near base or slowly disintegrating. Seed scales woody, persistent. Bracts ligulate-spatulate, half as long as seed scales, apex cuspidate or 3-lobed. Seeds triangular-oblong, covered on 1 side by wing, together as long as seed scales; wing lustrous, leathery-membranous. Cotyledons 2-4. Germination hypogeal. 2n=24 (Wu and Raven 1999).

Distribution and Ecology

China: S Gansu, S Shaanxi, E Sichuan, Yunnan, SW Hubei, Guizhou, Guangxi, Hunan, Guangdong (with the island of Hainan), SW Jiangxi, Fujian and Zhejiang, also on Taiwan and on Hong Kong Island. Isolated populations also occur in the mountains of N Laos and S Vietnam (Farjon 1990).

Big tree






The name commemorates a French nurseryman, J. B. Keteleer (1813-1903) (Dallimore et al. 1967).


Farjon, Aljos. 1990. Pinaceae: drawings and descriptions of the genera Abies, Cedrus, Pseudolarix, Keteleeria, Nothotsuga, Tsuga, Cathaya, Pseudotsuga, Larix and Picea. Königstein: Koeltz Scientific Books.

See also

Axelrod, D.I. 1976. History of the coniferous forests, California and Nevada. University of California Publications in Botany 70. Univ. of Calif. Press.

Carrière, E.A. 1866. Keteleeria fortunei (Murr.) Carrière comb. nov. Rev. Hort. 1866:449-451.

Farjon 1984.

Flous, F. 1936. Révision du genre Keteleeria. Bull. Soc. Hist. Nat. Toulouse 70:273-348.

Hsueh, C.J. 1983. A new variety of Keteleeria evelyniana. Acta Phytotax. Sin. 21(3):253.

Kanehira, R. 1936. Formosan trees indigenous to the island (revised). Taihoku, Formosa [Taiwan]: Dept. of Forestry, Govt. Research Inst.

Last Modified 2017-12-29