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Encyclopedia > Podocarps
Yellow-wood family
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Pinophyta
Class: Pinopsida
Order: Pinales
Family: Podocarpaceae
Genera

Acmopyle
Afrocarpus
Dacrycarpus
Dacrydium
Falcatifolium
Halocarpus
Lagarostrobos
Lepidothamnus
Manoao
Microcachrys
Microstrobos
Nageia
Parasitaxus
Phyllocladus
Podocarpus
Prumnopitys
Retrophyllum
Saxegothaea
Sundacarpus

A large family of mainly Southern Hemisphere conifers, with 18-19 genera and about 170-200 species of evergreen trees and shrubs. The family is a classic member of the Antarctic flora, with its main centres of diversity in Australasia, particularly New Caledonia, Tasmania and New Zealand, and to a slightly lesser extent, Malesia and South America (in the latter, primarily in the Andes mountains). Several genera extend north of the equator into Indo-China and/or the Philippines. Podocarpus additionally reaches as far north as southern Japan and southern China in Asia and Mexico in the Americas, and Nageia into southern China and southern India. Two genera also occcur in sub-Saharan Africa, the widespread Podocarpus and the endemic Afrocarpus.


One species, Parasitaxus ustus, is unique as the only known parasitic conifer. It occurs on New Caledonia, where it is parasitic on another member of the Podocarpaceae, Falcatifolium taxoides.


The genus Phyllocladus, here included in Podocarpaceae on genetic evidence, is treated by some botanists in its own family Phyllocladaceae.


Reference

Quinn, C. J. & Price, R. A. Phylogeny of the Southern Hemisphere Conifers. Proc. Fourth International Conifer Conference 129-136 (2003).


External link

Gymnosperm Database - Podocarpaceae (http://www.botanik.uni-bonn.de/conifers/po/index.htm)

Links to other Pinophyta families

Pinaceae | Araucariaceae | Podocarpaceae | Sciadopityaceae | Cupressaceae | Cephalotaxaceae | Taxaceae

  Results from FactBites:
 
viridaeplantae3 (795 words)
Many of the extant species of this group - like the families Pinaceae (pines), and Podocarpaceae (podocarps) - are nowadays more common in the temperate zones of Earth and in tropical montane regions, like the Himalayas and the Andes.
Podocarps are rather picturesque trees found in the montane forests of the Antilles, as well as on the American continents.
However there, and unlike West Indian pines, they are never the dominant species but are simply elements of the much more complex communities of montane rain forests and cloud forests.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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