Japanese Yew – Taxus cuspidata var. Pendula

Weeping Japanese Yew – Taxus cuspidata
Family Taxaceae – Yews

Chinese: 红豆杉 hong dou shan . This popular
evergreen contains toxic alkaloids.

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Japanese yew (Taxus cuspidata) is an outdoor ornamental that is winter-hardy across North America, into southern Canada. This shrub contains toxic quantities of the alkaloid taxine. Taxine is a complex mixture of alkaloids that is rapidly absorbed from the digestive tract and interferes with heart action. Leaves, twigs, and seeds are toxic. Only the red arils, the fleshy outer parts of the fruits, are considered nontoxic.

Cattle and horses became ill and died after ingesting the leaves and twigs of Japanese yew. In two cases in Ontario, several cattle died after gaining access to shrubs around houses or after being given hedge trimmings. [2]

A common ornamental in Japan and North America (since its introduction to the U.S. in 1833), it is easily shaped into hedges and topiary. Considered the hardiest, fastest-growing and easiest to cultivate of all yews. In Japan, it was formerly valued for piles and foundations, cabinetry, finish carpentry, woodcarving, water tanks, pails, bathtubs, trays, chopsticks, clogs, and for bows (for which it was also used by the Ainu).

Tree Encyclopedia / North American Insects & Spiders is dedicated to providing scientific and educational resources for our users through use of large images and macro photographs of flora and fauna.

Family Betulaceae – Alders, Birches, Hornbeams
The birches have long been popular ornamental trees in North America, chiefly in the northern United States and Canada. Several are native Americans, but many species have been introduced from Europe and Asia. Our specimens include river birch, Dahurian birch, paper birch, Arctic birch, Manchurian birch, Manchurian alder, downy birch, Japanese white birch, and 10 other species.    —Tree Index