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1,300-Year-Old Tree Found in Central China

BEIJING:  An endangered tree species believed to be more than 1,300 years old has been found during a census of ancient tress in central China’s Hunan Province, officials said today.

The taxus chinensis tree (a species of yew) was found in Shunhuangshan National Forest Park in Dong’an County in the city of Yongzhou.

It has a height of 35 metres and a diameter of 2.2 metres, the county’s forestry bureau said.

There are two subtrees on both sides of the taxus chinensis.

All the three ancient trees have been well preserved by local villagers, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

The taxus chinensis is an endangered plant which has existed for 2.5 million years. It produces few seeds and survives only in warm, moist areas.

Since large numbers of the tree have been felled to extract taxol, which is often used to treat cancer, the species is now under the first-grade national protection for endangered plants.

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