Home>Families>Yew, Taxaceae>Florida Yew, Taxus floridana
livestock to not browse on any part of this species. The aril, or fruit, is juicy and apparently not harmful but more data on its effects has yet to be found for provision here.
Habitat is usually shaded ravines in hardwood forests with moist soil. An intermediate shade species, it can grow in partial to full shade.
The anti-cancer agent, taxol, is present in the bark of this tree.
Distribution map courtesy: USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database
Trees of North America- A guide to field identification-a Golden Field Guide from St. Martin's Press © 2002 By C. Frank Brockman p.20
USDA, NRCS. 2011. The PLANTS Database (<http://plants.usda.gov/>, 22 August 2011). National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.
www.efloras.org - FNA vol. 2
TWC Staff of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas at Austin, www.wildflower.org
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Taxus floridana Nutt. Ex Chapm.
State List: FL
Endangered in Florida
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Photo Citaton: W.D. Brush @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database
A conifer in the Yew family, the Florida Yew is a small, bushy tree or shrub usually less than 15ft tall but sometimes up to 25ft. It has a short trunk with numerous stout, horizontal, spreading branches. The purplish-brown bark is smooth when young, becoming separated into thin, irregular scales with age.
Needles are light green with 2 grayish bands running the length. They are flat, approximately 1 inch long and grow in 2 ranks on opposite sides of the branch. Dioecious, inconspicuous male and female flowers are on separate trees. Yellowish brown, Florida Yew seeds are partially enclosed in an oval .5 inch fleshy red cup called an aril and mature in early fall. Seeds and foliage of the Florida Yew, as with all Yew members, is extremely poisonous to humans and livestock. There have been deaths in the past from injestion of both seeds and teas made from the needles.
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