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Juglans cathayensis Dode

Modern name

Juglans mandshurica Maxim.

A tree up to 70 ft high, with thick young shoots covered the first year with very viscid, gland-tipped hairs, as are also the main-stalks of the leaves, the fruits, and fruit-stalks. Leaves 2 to 3 ft long, with eleven to seventeen leaflets, which are ovate-oblong, 3 to 6 (occasionally 8) in. long, half as wide, obliquely rounded or heart-shaped at the base, taper-pointed, finely toothed, dark green and downy above, paler and with starry down beneath; midribs with gland-tipped hairs like those of the main leaf-stalk. Male flowers in pendulous, cylindrical catkins 9 to 15 in. long. Fruits clustered at the end of a stout stalk about 6 in. long, egg-shaped, 112 to 134 in. long, pointed; nut of similar shape, sharply pointed, six- to eight-angled, the angles spiny-toothed; rind 18 to 16 in. thick.

Native of Central and W. China, where it is common. Introduced by Wilson in 1903 to the Coombe Wood nursery, where young trees 8 or 10 ft high bore fruits. Owing to the thickness of the shell, the nuts are of small value for eating, although the kernel is of good flavour. It is a fine-foliaged tree of the same type as J. mandshurica; but the present species is a better grower.

The finest specimen of J. cathayensis so far recorded in the British Isles grows at Hergest Croft, Heref.; it measures 50 × 412 ft (1963). In Eire a tree at Birr Castle, Co. Offaly, pl. 1941, is now 30 × 134 ft (1966), and there is another example in the Glasnevin Botanic Garden, measuring 35 × 414 ft (1966).

Note. Although the material in the Kew Herbarium is not sufficient to decide the matter, it is doubtful if this species is really separable from J. mandshurica. The differences in the fruits adduced by Dode ate not correct and there seems to be no difference in the female catkins. The male catkins, however, seem to be longer (up to 10 in. in the material seen, against 3 to 4 in. in J. mandshurica). The difference in foliage is not clear-cut but the leaflets of J. mandshurica are mostly oblong to oblong-elliptic, tapering-acuminate or long-acute, undersurface faintly downy on the veins to almost glabrous; in J. cathayensis they are mostly oval-oblong or ovate, short-acuminate, lower surface persistently hairy, especially on the veins.

From the Supplement (Vol. V)

specimens: Borde Hill, Sussex, Little Bentley Wood, pl. 1911, 42 × 212 ft (1976); Hergest Croft, Heref., 45 × 5 ft (1969); Birr Castle, Co. Offaly, Eire, pl. 1941, 42 × 412 ft and 33 × 4 ft (1985); National Botanic Garden, Glasnevin, Eire, 35 × 414 ft (1966).



Other species in the genus