Himalaya to China (SW. Sichuan, NW. Yunnan) as per WCSP;
Himalaya; China: mountains of SE Xizang [Tibet], NW Yunnan and SW Sichuan; N
Myanmar [Burma]; N Viet Nam
as per Catalogue of Life;
Common name: Himalayan Hemlock • Manipuri:
थिंगे सल्ला Thinge salla

 


Occurs across the Himalayas: China: mountains of SE Xizang [Tibet], NW Yunnan and SW Sichuan; N Myanmar [Burma]; N Viet Nam (mainly Fan Si Pan Mtn. in Lao Cai Prov., possibly in Yen Bai Prov.)

Tsuga dumosa occurs in the Himalaya in a belt between 2,600 m and 3,200 m a.s.l., in a wide range of habitats, usually on alpine lithosols. In China it is most common between 2,200 m and 2,800 m a.s.l., but it occurs as low as 1,700 m and up to 3,500 m a.s.l. in Sichuan and Yunnan. The climate is moist monsoon, with abundant precipitation, wettest in the eastern Himalayas and Upper Burma, where it can receive up to 10,000 mm rain per year. It is an almost constant companion of conifers, e.g. Abies spp., Picea spp.; Cedrus deodara in the western Himalayas, and Larix griffithii in the eastern Himalayas; it is especially abundant on slopes with a northerly exposure, where it is the most shade tolerant tree.
 

 


 

Tsuga dumosa, commonly called the Himalayan Hemlock or in Chinese, Yunnan Tieshan (simplified Chinese: 云南铁杉; traditional Chinese: 雲南鐵杉; pinyin: Yúnnán tiěshān), is a species of conifer native to the eastern Himalayas. It occurs in parts of India, Burma, Vietnam, Tibet, and China. Within its native range the tree is used for construction as well as for furniture. In Europe and North America, it is occasionally encountered as an ornamental species and was first brought to the United Kingdom in 1838.

 

T. dumosa is a tree growing 20 to 25 metres (65 to 80 ft) high and exceptionally to 40 m (130 ft). The diameter at breast height is typically 40 to 50 cm (16 to 20 in), but can be beyond 100 cm (40 in).[2] The crown on small trees is ovoid and their form is like that of pendulous bushes. Older trees tend to have multiple stems from one or two sinuous boles, especially in cultivation. The crown of mature trees is broad, irregular-pyramidal and open. The bark is a similar to that of an old larch: somewhat pinkish to grey-brown and heavily ridged with broad, shallow, flaky fissures.[3] The branches are oblique or horizontal. The twigs are reddish brown or greyish yellow in their first year and are pubescent, i.e. covered with short hairs. Branches that are 2 to 3 years old are greyish brown or dark grey with leaf scars. The wood from the tree is a brownish yellow with a fine structure and straight veins.[2]
The leaves are spirally arranged, pointing forward on the branches and placed distantly from one another compared to other species in the genus Tsuga. They are linear in shape, and 10 to 25 mm (0.5 to 1 in) long by 2 to 2.5 mm (0.07 to 0.1 in) wide. The ends are obtuse or rounded, and very occasionally emarginate. The upper surface of the leaves is green and shiny, while the undersides have 2 wide silvery stomatal bands. The upper half of the leaves usually have small dents on the margins, i.e. the margins are rarely entire. The midrib is concave on the upper surface.[2][3]
The stamenate flowers are globose in shape, solitarily arranged and axillary. The anthers are a green-yellow in colour and they lack an air sac. The pistillate flowers are round-ovate in shape, also solitarily arranged, terminal and slightly down-curved. They have many spiral scales with 2 ovules contained within each scale. The seeds are about 9 mm (0.4 in) long, ovate in shape, brown in colour and have thin wings in their upper parts. Flowering occurs from April to May and fruiting from October to November.[2]

 

(From Wikipedia on 13.12.13)


 

 

 

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Tsuga dumosa (D.Don) Eichler (Pinaceae) is a very rare conifer in Uttarakhand and known only from Kali valley area in Pithoragarh district. This Kali valley area is the westernmost occurrence of this species which becomes fairly common in Nepal and eastward up to China.
This photograph is not taken in situ (in actual habitat) and taken of a plant material collected by one of my student from Kali valley.
It must be an addition to our eFI database.

More details on: http://www.conifers.org/pi/Tsuga_dumosa.php


I would like to add on by posting three photographs from the actual habitat in Pithoragarh district. It is found in Byans (Kali), Darma and northern side of Gori valley of Pithoragarh District, but is not found south of Gori ganga in Gori valley.The altitudinal range is 2500 to 3300m. As … mentioned, this part of Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand forms the western limit of this species. Eastwards, it is found in Western Nepal and then after a gap found in Eastern Himalayas upto Yunnan in China.


 

Thank you … for these in situ pics. Last year I trekked in Kali valley but did not found it or was not able to locate. Hope in next visit I will be able to meet this rare tree.

Here in eFI we are highly benefited with your extensive field experience.


We had also enumerated these trees in a few compartments and also did sampling elsewhere. An estimate is around 1 lakh trees in a gross area of 4000ha and net area of 1100ha in the three valleys. It is locally called Tangsinh (Tansen) in Bhotia dialect in Byans valley. In Sumdum, it is called ‘Paathri’.

The nearest tree one can see is below the road between Himkhola and Narayan ashram. In Choudans area of Kali valley, dense pure patches and intermixed with Kail (Pinus wallichiana), and Khursu (Quercus semecarpifolia) can be seen in forests above Himkhola, Sosa Van Panchayat, Payang Van Panchayat behind Narayan ashram, on Rungling-Kharangdhang forest path. One can also see pure patches on Himkhola- Kharangdhang path along Jyotigad. Hiragomri, Jyotigad and Rungling Reserved Forests have several such patches.
In Darma valley, one can see it across the river near village Sumdum where it is intermixed with Taxus and Abies spectabilis.
The upper portion near the ridges of Dug and Sobala Reserved Forests also have pure forests of this species.
In Gori valley, it is found in the tributary valleys of Jimba and Kulka valley and also in the upper reaches of Golpha Reserve Forests and Golpha Van Panchayat.
Across the Kali, it is found in the forests of Rapla and Sunsyara in Darchula district of Mahakali anchal in Nepal.
Forest fires not common at these cold heights, these trees are not fire hardy. The Tsuga forests were damaged in the widespread forest fires in mid 1990s, the remnants of which can still be seen as dead standing trees. However, currently, the regeneration is very good as we can see several saplings in the forests and also along the stream banks. The tree is a very good timber due to its strength, length of straight bole and a good diameter. The population structure hence consists of young saplings and very old trees. Middle aged trees are rare. The fallen trees are used by the villagers, however, most trees are left untouched due to inaccessible nature of most of the sites. The bark and wood chips are also used to make a local tea as is also done with Taxus. The tallest tree recorded was 44m high and 4m in girth at Sobala compartment no.8. 90% of the Tsuga forests are protected as it is part of the Askot Wildlife Sanctuary.
Why the tree species has not been able to cross Gori Ganga and not even a single tree is present south of the Gori ganga river, even in similar habitat is yet a mystery.

A few trees are planted in Lohaghat research nursery where it has not gained girth or form as in its natural range, but has started to produce cones regularly.



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Back…Tsuga dumosa/ABFEB01 : 8 posts by 4 authors. Attachments (7)

I am back after about a month of travelling and will share photos of trees/plants I collected on my journey as I edit them. I am sure I missed a lot of exciting stuff on the forum and apologise for contributing nothing to the discussions. I hope I can make up for my absence by posting regularly from now on.
I walked in the mountains with family today and we took a trail which we do not usually take as it lies mostly in shadow. I found a couple of new plants/trees and I am sharing one with you here.
To my untrained eyes it looks like Himalayan Hemlock of the pine family. I saw only a couple of young shrub like trees with no cones on them, making it difficult to be certain. But the needles’ shape and arrangement suggests Hemlock. Please advise.
Himalayan Hemlock (Tsuga dumosa)–Please confirm.
2000m, above Mcleodganj, Dharamshala,
Himachal Pradesh
15 Feb. 2015


efi page on Tsuga dumosa 


It is interesting that this species is not known in Himachal Pradesh. The available literature indicate Kali valley in Kumaon Uttarakhand as the westernmost distribution of this species.

Needs thorough checking for confirmation of identity.


The appearance also suggest Taxus baccata ssp. wallichiana.


Thank you … Could I have misidentified a Abies pindrow?


efi page on Abies pindrow & Taxus wallichiana (syn. Taxus baccata ssp. wallichiana)


I am sorry I did not see … post about Taxus wallichiana. I will have a look at the sample I have again and report back.


Ist photo superficially looks like Taxus wallichiana, but the buds/cones on the tip of the branches suggest otherwise.

Next branch redsembles to Abies sp.


This is Taxus baccata with male cones.


I don’t think these are male cones of Taxus, bracts are too rigid.
Moreover West Himalayan Taxus is now T. contorta not T. baccata.
This may be Tsuga dumosa only as suggested by …
Experts please decide.


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