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 Lithocarpus subsp. var.  
Lithocarpus edulis
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Fagaceae > Lithocarpus var. ,

Lithocarpus is a genus in the beech family Fagaceae, differing from Quercus in the erect male spikes. The Kew Checklist (see link below) accepts 334 species, though some other texts suggest as low as 100 species. All but one are native to east and southeast Asia; the single exception, Lithocarpus densiflorus (Tanoak), being native to western North America in southwest Oregon and California. The Asian species do not have a well-known English vernacular name, though the generic term stone oak has been proposed.

Although normally included in Lithocarpus, recent genetic evidence (Int. J. Plant Sci. 162(6): 1361–1379. 2001; pdf file) suggests that the North American species is only distantly related to Asian species; it may be better transferred to a genus of its own.

They are evergreen trees with leathery, alternate leaves, which may be either entire or toothed. The seed is a nut very similar to an oak acorn, but with a very hard, woody nut shell (hence the genus name, from Greek lithos, stone, + carpos, seed). The nut kernel is edible in some species (e.g. Lithocarpus edulis), but inedible, and very bitter, in others (e.g. L. densiflorus).

Several of the species are very attractive ornamental trees, used in parks and large gardens in warm temperate and subtropical areas.



Pests and diseases


Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Lithocarpus (literally stone fruit). Fagaceae. The article Pasania (page 2479) is to be referred to this new entry, as Lithocarpus is the older name and is the tenable one under the rules (see note in Sargent, Pl. Wilson. III. 205). Of Lithocarpus the following species are known to be in cult:

Lithocarpus densiflora, Rehd. (Pasania densiflora, Vol. V, p. 2479).

Lithocarpus cleistocarpa, Rehd. & Wilson (Quercus cleistocarpa, Vol. V, p. 2890).

Lithocarpus cornea, Rehd. (Pasania cornea, Vol V, p. 2479).

Lithocarpus glabra, Rehd. (Pasania glabra, p. 2479).

Lithocarpus henryi, Rehd. & Wilson (Quercus Henryi, p. 2890).

Lithocarpus thalassica, Rehd. (Pasania thalassica, p. 2479).

The above text is from the Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture. It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article. Click on "Collapse" in the header to hide this text.

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