Abies fargesii var. faxoniana Rehder & E.H. Wilson
Distributed in China where in the past logging has reduced the population considerably but acid rain is a present day threat
Native to China in NW Sichuan, South and Central Gansu, from Songpan north into the Min Shan and also a population in central Gansu.
This variety forms forests in Min Shan region. Subpopulations are fragmented in the southern part of its range with a disjunct outlier in central Gansu.
Habitat and Ecology
A. fargesii var. faxoniana occurs in the high montane to subalpine zones of northern Central China, at elevations between 3000 and 3600 metres above sea-level. Soils are mostly grey brown mountain podzols. The climate is cold and moist. At its lowest elevation broad-leaved trees (e.g. Fagus engleriana, Davidia involucrata) are important, but A. fargesii mostly forms either pure forests or mixed coniferous forests with among other species Picea purpurea, P. asperata, P. neoveitchii, P. brachytyla, Larix potaninii, Abies chensiensis, A. recurvata, Tsuga chinensis and Taxus chinensis. Some broad-leaved trees are usually present: Betula spp., Populus spp., and many shrubs: Cotoneaster, Ribes, Spiraea, Rhododendron and Berberis are among the common genera (except in dense Picea-Abies forest).
This variety (and the species as a whole) was heavily exploited in the past for construction timber.
An estimated reduction of more than 30% in the past due to logging means that this variety is assessed as Vulnerable.
Past logging has reduced the population by more than 30%. There is an on-going risk from acid rain in parts of the population.
Logging of this variety is now banned.
References and further reading
Farjon, A. (2010). A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.
Xiang, Q. & Rushforth, K. (2013). Abies fargesii var. faxoniana In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.1. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 07 July 2013.