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Detail drawing from de Laubenfels (1972).

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Distribution, redrawn from de Laubenfels (1972).

 

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Conservation status 2010: protocol 3.1

Podocarpus novae-caledoniae

Viellard 1862

Common names

Taxonomic notes

Syn.: Nageia novae-caledoniae (Viell.) Kuntze 1891 (Farjon 1998); Podocarpus beecherae de Laubenfels 2003. Farjon (2010) provides a fairly detailed rationale for reducing P. beecherae to synonymy with P. novae-caledoniae; the crux of his argument is that no characters reliably serve to distinguish the species except color of the ripe fruit (purple in P. novae-caledoniae, greenish in P. beecherae), and that this is not a sufficient distinction to warrant describing a new species.

Description

De Laubenfels (2003) provided the following description of P. beecherae, which shall serve until I have an opportunity to describe a more representative P. novae-caledoniae:

A monecious shrub or small tree up to 6 m tall. Crown rounded or elongated on tall specimens. Much-branch, with leaves sometimes crowded near the apex of the shoots. Bark fibrous, brown when young, weathering to grey. Leaves linear to linear-lanceolate, expanding in the basal c. 1 cm and widest proximal to the midpoint, the basal 3–5 mm forming more or less of a petiole, 3–6 cm × 3–4.5 mm, straight and slightly recurved margins, flat, or the two sides forming a slight “V”, with a very weak midrib or more commonly with a slight trough, bluntly ribbed below, shiny light green to yellow-green above, lighter green below and glaucous (waxy) except over the midrib, narrowing in the distal 4–5 mm to an acute or sub-acute apex, sometimes bluntly rounded. Juvenile leaves variable, up to 8–10 cm × 5 mm, linear-lanceolate, narrowly acute. Leaves on seedlings 2–3 cm × 2.5–4 mm. Primary scales of foliage buds erect triangular, keeled, 1–2 × 0.5 mm, secondary scales not seen. Pollen cones solitary or in groups of 2–3, sessile, 10–14 × 2–2.5 mm, yellow. Microsporophylls 0.6 mm long with two lateral pollen sacs and a tiny triangular apex between the pollen sacs. Pollen cone buds with erect keeled triangular scales about 0.5 mm long, secondary scales overlapping in a globular head 1 mm diam. before expanding. Female structure with a peduncle 3.5–7 mm long, foliola 1.5–2 mm long reflexed and sometimes missing on fully ripe fruit, receptacle formed by two slightly unequal bracts 4–6 × 4 mm, becoming swollen and fleshy at maturity, when 10–12 × 7 mm, light green-yellow and glaucous (waxy), the longer bract bearing an irregularly ellipsoid (rounder on one side) seed near its apex 8 × 5 mm., glaucous green with a blunt-pyramidal apex (de Laubenfels 2003).

Distribution and Ecology

New Caledonia (de Laubenfels 1972).

The IUCN reports that the population status is stable.

Big tree

Oldest

Dendrochronology

Ethnobotany

Observations

Remarks

Citations

Laubenfels, D.J. de. 2003. A new species of Podocarpus from the maquis of New Caledonia. New Zealand Journal of Botany 41: 715-718. http://www.royalsociety.org.nz/site/publish/journals/nzjb/2003/054.aspx, accessed 2008.10.22, now defunct.

See also

Association Endemia, a site devoted to New Caledonian species. Has excellent photos, a range map, and other information. In French.

Last Modified 2012-11-23