Podocarpus nubigenus Lindl.

A realtively widespread conifer in southern Chile that also has very small populations in the Argentinian Andes. Exploited for its durbale timber and for use as Christmas trees.


Endemic to Chile and Argentina. In Chile it occurs in Región IX [Araucanía]; Región X [Los Lagos]; Región XI [Aisén] & Región XI [Magellanes]. In Chile it is distributed from Provincia de Cautín, Rio Toltén (39° S) to Provincia Magellanes (50° 23'S) (Rodríguez  et al. 1995), where it occurs in the Andes, parts of the Central Depression and the Coastal Cordillera. In the south it tends to occur more sporadically.

In Argentina it is restricted to a few locations in the Province of Neuquén where it occurs as solitary trees or in small groups (Erize, 1997).

Habitat and Ecology

A component of the humid evergreen forests, often on poorly drained soils. It is often associated with Drimys winteri, Fitzroya cupressoides, Laureliopsis philippiana, Nothofagus betuloides, N. nitida, Pilgerodendron uviferum, Saxegothaea conspicua, and many species of myrtle. Occurs from sea level up to 1,000 m

Human Uses

The wood of Podocarpus nubigenus is highly prized due to its good colour, durability and strength. It is used for a wide range of products including furniture, interior fittings, flooring and crafts. Young trees are cut for use as Christmas trees.

Conservation Status

Global Status

Near Threatened

Global Rationale

Despite its wide distribution and relatively large number of locations, many of which contain healthy groups of old-growth trees and good regeneration, Podocarpus nubigenus is assessed as Near Threatened as continued changes in landuse, particularly in the Coastal Cordillera, combined with past exploitation in other parts of its range could result in a population reduction approaching 30%. It would then qualify for listing as Vulnerable under A2 or A4.

Primary ongoing threats are constant logging for firewood and for its quality timber. Additional threats include the cutting of young trees for Christmas trees. Land use change which includes the conversion of its native habitat into commercial plantations and clearance for agricultural use are further serious threats. Such deforestation of old-growth forests is leading to a decline and degradation of important wildlife habitat

Conservation Actions

It is afforded some protection in a number of National Parks. Some conservation initiatives for Fitzroya cupressoides have also involved the restoration of Podocarpus nubigenus (Hechenleitner 2005).

References and further reading

  1. Brownless, P., Latta, J. and Moncreif, S. 1997. Germination of Podocarpus nubigenus. The New Plantsman 4(4): 215-217
  2. Cabello, A. 1990. Enraizamiento de estacas de Alerce (Fitzroya cupressoides (Mol.) Johnston) y de Mañio macho (Podocarpus nubigenus Lindl.). Ci. Forest 6(2): 135-139
  3. Erize, F. 1997. El Nuevo libro del Árbol. Vol 1. Especies forestales de la Argentina occidental. El Ateneo, Buenos Aires.
  4. Gardner, M. 2013. Podocarpus nubigenus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T32029A2808526. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2013-1.RLTS.T32029A2808526.en. Downloaded on 04 August 2017
  5. Gastman, E. 1988. Propagación vegetativa de coniferas chilenas con aptitudes ornamentales. Facultad de Ciencias Agarias, Universidad Austral de Chile
  6. Gerding, V., Hermosilla, M.E. and Grez, R. 1996. Sustrato de corteza compostada para la propagación vegetativa de estacas de tallo de Podocarpus nubigenus Lindl. y Eucryphia cordifolia Cav. Bosque 17(2): 57-64
  7. Hechenleitner, P., Gardner, M., Thomas, P., Echeverría, C., Escobar, B., Brownless, P. and Martínez, C. 2005. Plantas amenazadas del Centro-Sur de Chile. Distribución, Conservación y Propagación. Universidad Austral de Chile y Real Jardín Botánico de Edimburgo, , Santiago
  8. Lusk, C.H. 1996. Stand dynamics of the shade-tolerant conifers Podocarpus nubigena and Saxegothaea conspicua in Chilean temperate rain forest. Journal of Vegetation Science 7(4): 549-558.
  9. Rodríguez, R. and Quezada, M. 1995. Gymnospermae. In: Marticorena, C. and Rodríguez, R. (eds), Flora de Chile Vol. 1. Pteridophyta-Gymnospermae, pp. 351. Universidad de Concepciόn, Concepciόn
  10. Rodríguez, R.R., Matthei, O. and Quezada, M. 1983. Flora Arbórea de Chile. Universidad de Concepción, Concepción (Chile).

External links