Taxus baccata

Translator :Roya.T. Neisari


This type can be regarded as an alive and a masterpiece of the heritage of the Iranian natural north forests. By means of ecological variety and genetically storages as well as a homeland plant, it is a unique type and has survived the third period of geology. Fossil studies have shown that Taxus baccata trees  is 190 million years old and it is said that the pre- historic man were used to know them and made poison out of their leaves for poisoning their  spears. It is supposed that the word "Taxin" the means poisonous.

Taxus baccata is a tree with a kind of needle shaped leaves, shadow-liking and a shin like farthing. Its inner wood is red and the leaves are permanent and ever green and in lower part shining. It needs humid soil. The height of the tree reaches to 9 to 30 meters and its width is 3 meters. ( As seen  in the forests of Savad Kooh 1999)

Its growth is very slow and the annual growth is 10 centimeters. The  seeds are spread by the movements of birds like pheasant, squirrels as well help the spreading of Taxus baccata,s seeds. Its she- fruit is red and the he- fruit yellow and both of them are non- poisonous.

Taxon of this tree has the benefit of curing some cancers .

Today, a big French medical company which produces Taxon has produced a big nursery of this type. In the United States, as well, there are three big companies which are only producing this type of plant, millions annually.


This type is seen in northern forests of Iran in the heights of Afra  Takhte in Gorgan  and Pooneh Aram in Gorgan and Nahar khoran to Savad Kooh forests and the valleys of Guilan and  Mazandaran , besides another types of plants . Dr.Jaziraii has studied the colony of Fageto - Taxetum beside Fagus Orientalis, Glutinosa, Acer Campestre, Cappinus betulus ,Ulmus glabra and…in Mazandaran forests ,in 1977, Dr Mosaddegh had studied another colony called Evonymo Taxetum.



From the book: "At the Threshold of saying farewell to the Ancient North Forests of Iran"Author Nasrindokht Khatibi