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Cupressus arizonica

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
PLANTAE TRACHEOPHYTA PINOPSIDA PINALES CUPRESSACEAE

Scientific Name: Cupressus arizonica
Species Authority: Greene
Infra-specific Taxa Assessed:
Common Name(s):
English Arizona Cypress, Piute Cypress
Spanish Cedro, Cedro Blanco
Synonym(s):
Hesperocyparis arizonica (Greene) Bartel
Taxonomic Notes: As for the other American true cypresses (genus Cupressus) workers with DNA sequence data have recently erected a new genus, Hesperocyparis, to accommodate these species and separate them from “old world” cypresses. Other studies of a similar kind indicate that this is premature, and the suggestion is not followed here.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2011-04-28
Assessor(s): Farjon, A.
Reviewer(s): Thomas, P.
Justification:
Despite the threatened status of several of its varieties, which have disjunct and limited ranges, the species as a whole occurs over a huge area in the SW of North America. The nominate variety has an almost similar range (does not occur in California) and is Least Concern like the species as a whole and is therefore not assessed separately.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is found in southwestern USA (California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas) and Mexico (Baja California Norte, Sonora, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Zacatecas, Nuevo León, San Luis Potosí, Tamaulipas).
Countries:
Native:
Mexico (Baja California, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Nuevo León, San Luis Potosí, Sonora, Tamaulipas, Zacatecas); United States (Arizona, California, New Mexico, Texas)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is widespread but usually only found in small fragmented subpopulations.
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: In montane coniferous forest, mixed broad-leaf-coniferous woodland, Pinyon-Juniper woodland, sclerophyllous scrubland ('chaparral'), and valley scrub-grassland. The altitudinal range is between 750 m and 2700 m a.s.l. Associated species in these vegetation types are Pseudotsuga menziesii, Abies concolor, Calocedrus decurrens, Pinus ponderosa, P. jeffreyi, P. arizonica, P. leiophylla, P. lambertiana, P. sabiniana, P. coulteri, P. cembroides, P. edulis, P. monophylla, Juniperus deppeana var. pachyphlaea, J. californica, Fraxinus velutina, Quercus spp., Garrya sp., Cercocarpus sp., Platanus sp., Populus tremuloides, Salix sp. (along creeks), Rhus ovata, Fremontia californica, Yucca whippleyi, Adenostoma fasciculatum, Arctostaphylos glandulosa, Ceanothus spp., and Rhamnus sp. It is usually 'gregarious' and occurs on ridges, slopes and in canyons, sometimes in creek beds, in rocky terrain in yellow or red-brown loam, sand or gravel, or among boulders over limestone, sandstone, slate or granite. The climate is characterized by warm to hot, dry summers and winter rainfall.
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: There are no known commercial uses of the wood at the present time. The species, in particular var. glabra from Arizona, has for a considerable time been cultivated in gardens and parks in Europe and the USA as an ornamental. Young trees have a naturally conical habit and several cultivars have been selected to enhance this shape; other cultivars emphasize juvenile leaf type and extreme glaucousness of foliage. This species is tolerant of draught and grows well on chalk in full sun.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Fire hazards are the main threat, especially affecting several of the varieties with a limited distribution and/or a small and fragmented subpopulations.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: More protected areas should be established that contain this species, so that proper fire management can be more successfully implemented or enforced.

Citation: Farjon, A. 2013. Cupressus arizonica. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 28 July 2014.
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