Long-leaved podocarp


Long-leaved podocarp, or yew podocarp, is native to Japan and Taiwan, but it is widely cultivated to make living fences, walls, and bonsai. In its native distribution it reaches a height of 80 feet, with a trunk 4 feet in diameter. The leaves are up to 3 inches long and are grouped toward the ends of branches. Male and female cones appear on different trees during spring; male ones are up to 1.5 inches long and shed their pollen to the wind, female ones are inconspicuous until they develop a red, fleshy structure that is eaten by birds, which in turn disperse the exposed seed. The generic name means foot with a fruit, in reference to the base or fleshy foot of the female cone. The species name means large leaves.

The photographed tree is one of two male specimens planted during the 1950s in front of the Piñero Building. In 2005 a tree was planted at the southwest corner of the Biology Building.

Podocarpus macrophyllus (Podocarpaceae)