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Useful Tropical Plants

Pistacia chinensis

Bunge

Anacardiaceae

+ Synonyms

Pistacia formosana Matsum.

Pistacia philippinensis Merr. & Rolfe

Rhus argyi H.Lév.

Rhus gummifera H.Lév.

Common Name: Chinese Pistache

Pistacia chinensis
Cultivated tree in open area
Photograph by: Magnus Manske
Creative Commons License
Pistacia chinensis Pistacia chinensis Pistacia chinensis

General Information

Pistacia chinensis is a deciduous tree with a semi-open, rounded canopy that becomes more spreading with age, it usually grows from 4 - 20 metres tall, occasionally reaching 26 metres. The bole, which is sometimes buttressed, can be 100cm in diameter[
309
Title
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/shrubs/
Publisher
University of Florida
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
PDF fact sheets on over 500 shrubs.
,
451
Title
Flora Malesiana Series 1
Publication
 
Author
Various
Website
http://www.archive.org
Publisher
Nationaal Herbarium Nederiand, Universiteit Leiden branch
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A massive treatment of the plants of the Malaysian Archipelago. Much of it has been made available to download from the Internet
,
1636
Title
Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Pistacia L. (Anacardiaceae)
Publication
American Journal of Plant Sciences, 2012, 3, 12-32
Author
AL-Saghir M.G. & Porter D.M.
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/ajps.2012.31002
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, dye and timber. It is cultivated in plantations for its timber and is often grown as an ornamental and shade tree, being valued especially for its crimson leaf colour in the autumn[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
317
Title
Mansfeld's Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de/pls/htmldb_pgrc/f?p=185:3:4292127278597336
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details of a huge range of useful plants.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
451
Title
Flora Malesiana Series 1
Publication
 
Author
Various
Website
http://www.archive.org
Publisher
Nationaal Herbarium Nederiand, Universiteit Leiden branch
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A massive treatment of the plants of the Malaysian Archipelago. Much of it has been made available to download from the Internet
,
1636
Title
Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Pistacia L. (Anacardiaceae)
Publication
American Journal of Plant Sciences, 2012, 3, 12-32
Author
AL-Saghir M.G. & Porter D.M.
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/ajps.2012.31002
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 

Range

E. Asia - central and southern China, Taiwan, Philippines.

Habitat

Riversides and in cultivated areas up to 2,400 metres in the Himalayas[
51
Title
Flowers of the Himalayas.
Publication
 
Author
Polunin. O. and Stainton. A.
Publisher
Oxford Universtiy Press
Year
1984
ISBN
-
Description
A very readable and good pocket guide (if you have a very large pocket!) to many of the wild plants in the Himalayas. Gives many examples of plant uses.
]. Forest on stone hills; at elevations from 140 - 3,550 metres in southern and western China[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
]. Open slopes from near sea level to 1,350 metres in the Philippines[
451
Title
Flora Malesiana Series 1
Publication
 
Author
Various
Website
http://www.archive.org
Publisher
Nationaal Herbarium Nederiand, Universiteit Leiden branch
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A massive treatment of the plants of the Malaysian Archipelago. Much of it has been made available to download from the Internet
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *  *
Medicinal Rating *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitDeciduous Tree
Height20.00 m
Growth RateMedium
PollinatorsWind
Self-fertileNo
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Ornamental, Wild

Cultivation Details

Pistacia chinensis is a plant of the warm temperate to tropical zones. It tolerates temperatures down to between -5 and -10°c when fully dormant[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. The tree is likely to be somewhat more cold tolerant than this in areas with hot summers that fully ripen the current season's growth[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].
Grows best in a sunny position, tolerating light shade[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
,
309
Title
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/shrubs/
Publisher
University of Florida
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
PDF fact sheets on over 500 shrubs.
]. Succeeds in an ordinary loamy soil and in dry soils[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
,
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
]. Often found on limestone soils in the wild[
1636
Title
Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Pistacia L. (Anacardiaceae)
Publication
American Journal of Plant Sciences, 2012, 3, 12-32
Author
AL-Saghir M.G. & Porter D.M.
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/ajps.2012.31002
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 
]. Plants are tolerant of urban pollution[
309
Title
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/shrubs/
Publisher
University of Florida
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
PDF fact sheets on over 500 shrubs.
]. Established plants are drought tolerant[
309
Title
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/shrubs/
Publisher
University of Florida
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
PDF fact sheets on over 500 shrubs.
].
Any pruning that needs to be done is best carried out in the spring[
238
Title
Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
Publication
 
Author
Bown. D.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley, London.
Year
1995
ISBN
0-7513-020-31
Description
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
].
The fruits, at least in the Philippines, are often empty with only an undeveloped ovule. This is apparently due to the failure of pollination[
451
Title
Flora Malesiana Series 1
Publication
 
Author
Various
Website
http://www.archive.org
Publisher
Nationaal Herbarium Nederiand, Universiteit Leiden branch
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A massive treatment of the plants of the Malaysian Archipelago. Much of it has been made available to download from the Internet
].
This species strongly resents being transplanted[
113
Title
The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation.
Publication
 
Author
Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W.
Publisher
Athens Ga. Varsity Press
Year
1987
ISBN
0942375009
Description
A very detailed book on propagating trees. Not for the casual reader.
], it should be planted out into its permanent position as young as possible and given some protection from winter cold for its first few winters outdoors.
A dioecious species, both male and female forms must be grown if seed is required.

Edible Uses

Young shoots and leaves - cooked. Used as a vegetable[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
,
182
Title
Ornamental Shrubs, Climbers and Bamboos.
Publication
 
Author
Thomas. G. S.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1992
ISBN
0-7195-5043-2
Description
Contains a wide range of plants with a brief description, mainly of their ornamental value but also usually of cultivation details and varieties.
,
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
].

Seed - cooked. It is roasted and then eaten, or is used in confectionery[
105
Title
Tanaka's Cyclopedia of Edible Plants of the World.
Publication
 
Author
Tanaka. T. & Nakao S.
Publisher
Keigaku Publishing; Tokyo
Year
1976
ISBN
-
Description
The most comprehensive list of edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
,
183
Title
Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications
Year
1990
ISBN
0-9628087-0-9
Description
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
].
The seed is a source of an edible oil[
1636
Title
Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Pistacia L. (Anacardiaceae)
Publication
American Journal of Plant Sciences, 2012, 3, 12-32
Author
AL-Saghir M.G. & Porter D.M.
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/ajps.2012.31002
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Medicinal

All parts of the plant can be used medicinally to treat a range of conditions including dysentery, inflammatory swelling, psoriasis and rheumatism[
1640
Title
A Potential Bioenergy Tree: Pistacia chinensis Bunge
Publication
Energy Procedia 16 (2012) 737-746
Author
Mingli Tang et al
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2012.01.119
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Resin from the related Pistacia lentiscus is analgesic, antitussive, expectorant and sedative. It would be worthwhile examining the resin obtained from this species[
218
Title
Medicinal Plants of China
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S.
Publisher
Reference Publications, Inc.
Year
1985
ISBN
0-917256-20-4
Description
Details of over 1,200 medicinal plants of China and brief details of their uses. Often includes an analysis, or at least a list of constituents. Heavy going if you are not into the subject.
].

Other Uses

The plant can be used as a rootstock for the pistachio nut, Pistacia vera[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
317
Title
Mansfeld's Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de/pls/htmldb_pgrc/f?p=185:3:4292127278597336
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details of a huge range of useful plants.
].

A yellow dye can be obtained from the wood[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
].

The leaves contain around 14.5% tannins[
1640
Title
A Potential Bioenergy Tree: Pistacia chinensis Bunge
Publication
Energy Procedia 16 (2012) 737-746
Author
Mingli Tang et al
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2012.01.119
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 
].
Galls produced as a result of insect activity on the tree contain around 20 - 30% tannins[
1640
Title
A Potential Bioenergy Tree: Pistacia chinensis Bunge
Publication
Energy Procedia 16 (2012) 737-746
Author
Mingli Tang et al
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2012.01.119
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

An oil obtained from the fruit and seed has a high potential for use as a biodiesel[
1640
Title
A Potential Bioenergy Tree: Pistacia chinensis Bunge
Publication
Energy Procedia 16 (2012) 737-746
Author
Mingli Tang et al
Website
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2012.01.119
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

The wood is hard and very durable. An attractive wood, it is used in furniture making and carpentry[
51
Title
Flowers of the Himalayas.
Publication
 
Author
Polunin. O. and Stainton. A.
Publisher
Oxford Universtiy Press
Year
1984
ISBN
-
Description
A very readable and good pocket guide (if you have a very large pocket!) to many of the wild plants in the Himalayas. Gives many examples of plant uses.
,
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
309
Title
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://hort.ifas.ufl.edu/shrubs/
Publisher
University of Florida
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
PDF fact sheets on over 500 shrubs.
]. It is used in the Philippines for making tobacco pipes[
451
Title
Flora Malesiana Series 1
Publication
 
Author
Various
Website
http://www.archive.org
Publisher
Nationaal Herbarium Nederiand, Universiteit Leiden branch
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A massive treatment of the plants of the Malaysian Archipelago. Much of it has been made available to download from the Internet
].

Propagation

Pre-soak the seed for 16 hours in alkalized water[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
], or for 3 - 4 days in warm water[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
], and sow in individual containers[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
,
113
Title
The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation.
Publication
 
Author
Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W.
Publisher
Athens Ga. Varsity Press
Year
1987
ISBN
0942375009
Description
A very detailed book on propagating trees. Not for the casual reader.
]. Two months cold stratification may speed up germination, so it might be better to sow the seed in early winter[
113
Title
The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation.
Publication
 
Author
Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W.
Publisher
Athens Ga. Varsity Press
Year
1987
ISBN
0942375009
Description
A very detailed book on propagating trees. Not for the casual reader.
]. The germination is variable and can be slow, Plant out into their permanent positions when 20cm or more tall.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood from juvenile trees[
113
Title
The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation.
Publication
 
Author
Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W.
Publisher
Athens Ga. Varsity Press
Year
1987
ISBN
0942375009
Description
A very detailed book on propagating trees. Not for the casual reader.
].
Layering.
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2019-08-18. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Pistacia+chinensis>

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