Torreya californica Torr.

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Credits

Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Torreya californica' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/torreya/torreya-californica/). Accessed 2019-12-09.

Genus

Common Names

  • California Nutmeg

Synonyms

  • T. myristica Hook.

Glossary

convex
Having a rounded surface.
glaucous
Grey-blue often from superficial layer of wax (bloom).
linear
Strap-shaped.
midrib
midveinCentral and principal vein in a leaf.

References

There are currently no active references in this article.

Credits

Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Torreya californica' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/torreya/torreya-californica/). Accessed 2019-12-09.

A tree 50 to 70 ft high in California (rarely 100 ft), with a straight, erect trunk and whorled branches; branches horizontal; branchlets pendulous, bearing the leaves in two flattish ranks. Leaves spreading at angles of 45° to 70° to the twig, 112 to 3 in. long, about 18 in. wide, slightly convex, linear, with a slender spine-tipped point, dark glossy green above, yellowish green with a glaucous band of stomata each side the midrib beneath. The foliage as a whole is hard, stiff, and well armed by the needle-like points. Male flowers egg-shaped, 13 in. long, pale yellow. Fruit olive-like green, ultimately streaked with purple, about 112 in. long by 1 in. wide, a thin, resinous flesh covering the grooved shell of the seed. Bot. Mag., t. 4780.

Native of California, where it is widely spread in the forest region but nowhere common; introduced in 1851. This interesting and handsome tree is hardy and has borne fertile seed as far to the north-east as Peterborough, but the majority of the largest specimens are in the Atlantic zone. Among those measured recently by Alan Mitchell are: Mells Park, Dorset, 72 × 734 ft (1975); Tortworth, Glos., pl. 1861, 39 × 914 ft (1973); Tregothnan, Cornwall, 69 × 1014 ft (1971); Benmore, Argyll, 40 × 812 ft (1976); Castlewellan, Co. Down, 56 × 1014 ft (1976).

From the Supplement (Vol. V)

specimens: Sotterley Hall, Suffolk, pl. 1936, 46 × 434 ft (1985); Mells Park, Dorset, 72 × 734 ft (1975); Streatham Hall, Devon, 50 × 912 ft and 65 × 1012 ft at 3 ft (1983); Tregothnan, Cornwall, 72 × 1034 ft (1985); Benmore, Argyll, 46 × 834 ft (1983); Stonefield, Argyll, a procumbent plant 934 ft in girth (1981); Castlewellan, Co. Down, 66 × 1034 ft (1982).


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