Michael P. FRANKIS  GALLERY

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MEXICO
10 November 1991. Saltillo - Cuautemos. Very dry low limestone hills in broad valley with open low Pinus scrub; mixed with other mostly thorny semi-desert low shrubs, Agave several spp., Ferocactus sp. and Opuntia 2-3 spp. Some firewood cutting of pines; none larger than 5 m tall nor very old, and several with cut branches. Moderate grazing; some regeneration, possibly just adequate for maintenance of stand.
1
Pinus pinceana
1
Pinus pinceana
- Tree
One of a small scattered population, mixed with Pinus cembroides, at Cuautemos, 25°18'N 100°55'W, 2120 m alt.
Mexico

2
Pinus pinceana
- Close up
Mexico
2
Pinus pinceana
3
Pinus cembroides
3
Pinus cembroides
- Tree
Same place as Pinus pinceana. 2120 m, 25°18'N 100°55'W. Cones on several trees to 5 m tall. Open shrubby tree to 5 m, leaves 2-3's, 3-4 cm, light to mid green on both sides. Cones 3-4 cm, scales thin.
Mexico

10 November 1991. Saltillo - Mesa de las Tablas. Limestone valley and mountain slopes extending east from Saltillo; dry at western end, becoming moister to east and at higher altitudes. Small agricultural clearings interspersed with mixed scrub forest to open and closed canopy conifer forest; also large open area from 1975 fire in SE of valley not yet re-forested (possibly due to grazing pressure) and now Agave dominated low scrub.
4
Pinus montezumae
4
Pinus aff. montezumae
- Tree
2380 m, 25°20'N 100°32'W. Tree 12 m, intermediate between P. hartwegii (mostly at higher altitudes) and P. montezumae (mostly lower), but closer to former. Leaves dark green, 25 cm; cones 8 cm, grey-green, scales thin.
Mexico
5
Pinus teocote
- Trees
2440 m, 25°21'N 100°35'W. Cones from low branch of 17 m tree; only one with 1991 cone crop out of many trees.
Mexico
5
Pinus teocote
6
Pinus gregii
6
Pinus gregii
- Tree
2440 , 25°21'N 100°35'W. Cones from two young trees 12-14 m tall; no new crop but closed 1990 and earlier cones plentiful. Male flowers shedding pollen.
Mexico
7
Juniperus angosturana
7
Juniperus angosturana
- Shrub
(Syn. J. monosperma var. gracilis)
2140 m, 25°18'N 100°27'W. Shrub 2 m, foliage bright green. Dioecious; cones pink-purple bloomed grey, 6-8 mm, moderately soft, very sour-resinous, bitter; one seed per cone. Undershrub in mature P. montezumae forest.

Mexico
8
Juniperus flaccida
8
Juniperus flaccida
- Shrub
2500 m 25°17'N 100°26'W. Shrubby tree 5 m; foliage pendulous, grey-green, very attractive; dioecious. Cones 12 mm, brown, scale edges prominent; pulp hard, fibrous, sweet but bitter after-taste, fruity-resinous; seeds 6 mm, pale brown with resin blisters, several per cone.
Mexico
11 November 1991. Saltillo - Los Alamos - Monterrey. Habitats much as previous one; narrower valley closing into precipitous gorge 300+ m deep and 30 m wide at one point.
9
Pinus johannis
9
Pinus johannis
- Shoots & Cones
1770 m, 25°31'N 100°28'W. Dense shrub to 3 m, leaves in 3's, 4 cm, glossy dark green outer face, inner white. Cones 4 cm with very thin scales. Good seed crop.
Mexico
13 November 1991. Iturbide - Cerro Potosi. Main stops just west of Diezyocho de Marzo, open pine forest on dry limestone site at foot of Cerrro Potosi, and at high altitudes on Cerro Potosi, mixed, mainly conifer forest also on limestone, moister and cool. Altitudes on Potosi recalculated on basis of published 3713 m (US Defence Mapping Agency) for summit; our altimeter gave 3630 m.
10
Pinus culminicola
10
Pinus culminicola
- Shoots & Cones
3450 m, 24°52'N 100°14'W. Shrub to 4 m, similar to P. johannis in habit but leaves in 5's and cones yellower, slightly thicker scaled and heavily wrinkled; easily distinguished. Heavy cone crop but seeds already all taken by the four Jay species seen on the mountain.
Mexico
11
Pinus culminicola
11
Pinus culminicola
- Shrub
3710 m, 24°52'N 100°14'W. Shrub only 1.5 m tall at and near mountain summit. Still some good seed present though most gone. Cones larger here (to 5 cm), probably benefits from moister soil.

Pinus hartwegii (syn. P. rudis) in the background.
At summit; two very old, windswept and gnarled 5 m trees. Leaves in 5's, dark green, dense, curved upbut, very short, only 5-8 cm with tree probably at the limits of its climatic tolerance. Good cone crop, suggesting that 1990/91 drought had made conditions suitable for seed bearing at upper limits of each species' range, but too dry lower down in main part of ranges.
Mexico
14 November 1991. Iturbide - Ascension - Gral. Zaragosa. Brief stop west of Iturbide, a fairly dry low altitude site; scrub with scattered Pinus apulcensis on limestone. Next conifers on extremely dry limestone/gypsum soil in rain shadow on west side of mountains.
12
Juniperus flaccida
12
Juniperus flaccida
- Trees
1830 m, 24°42'N 100°05'W. Old trees to 12 m. 1.5 m girth, pendulous grey-green foliage. Dioecious; cones slightly larger than 12 mm.
Mexico
13
Juniperus saltillensis
13
Juniperus saltillensis
- Shrub
1830 m, 24°42'N 100°05'W. Shrub to 2 m with bright grey-green foliage. Dioecious, cones 6 mm, purple bloomed pale, globose, pulp moderately soft, sour-resinous; one seed per cone.
Mexico
14
Juniperus saltillensis
- Shoots
Mexico
14
Juniperus saltillensis
15
Pinus arizonica stormiae
15
Pinus arizonica var. stormiae
- Tree
1830 m, 24°42'N 100°05'W. Trees to 12 m, leaves in 5's, twisted, grey-green, 18-20 cm. Cones to 10 cm, red-brown; only 1990 crop present but a few seeds still contained.
Mexico
15 November 1991. Cerro Peņa Nevada. Taxus globosa, Abies vejari and Pinus martinezii in humid, very moist (by NE Mexican standards) heavily forested (oak/fir/yew) valley. Pinus johannis on dry high altitude marble rock (almost no soil) with open mixed scrub forest.
16
Taxus globosa
16
Taxus globosa
- Tree
(and a young Abies vejari behind, to right)
Trees to 8m; foliage intermediate between European T. baccata and Chinese T. mairei, fairly open and sparse; fruit with broader aril than T. baccata, otherwise similar.
Mexico
17
Picea martinezii
17
Picea martinezii
- Tree
2260 m, 23°54'N 99°47'W. Tree 25 m. Leaves 3 cm, glossy green, sideways flattened, viciously sharp; cones 8-15 cm. Very few 1991 cones, these also insect infested but a few seeds good; also a few seeds still in the abundant 1990 cones.
Mexico
18
Pinus johannis
- Tree
2680 m, 23°49'N 99°53'W. Trees to 5 m tall.
Mexico
18
Pinus johannis
15 November 1991. Road from Cerro Peņa Nevada to Dr Arroyo. Dry Pinus nelsonii/P. cembroides forest on limestone. No cones on P. cembroides at this site.
19
Pinus nelsonii
19
Pinus nelsonii
- Tree
2050 m 23°99°56'W. Trees to 6m. Leaves in 3's, occasionally 4's, but holding together singly; cones 6-11 cm, bright red, on stout 5 cm recurved peduncles. Immature conelets (few seen) already half mature size, and with leaves on peduncle (unique among pines).
Mexico
17 November 1991. Juchipila, SW Zacatecas. Mixed Quercus/Pinus maximartinezii forest on fairly moist hillside above village of Pueblo Viejo; only other conifer present Pinus lumholtzii, two specimens inaccessible cliff-face. Only known site for P. maximartinezii, but more extensive than literature suggests; population probably exceeds 1000 trees over a square mile or so.
20
Pinus maximartinezii
20
Pinus maximartinezii
- Tree
1800-2450 m 21°21'N 103°14'W. Trees to 20 m scattered widely over hillside; 1992 cones full-size (12-20 x 10-15 cm, massive, to 1.5 kg) but very unripe; 1991 cones all harvested for edible seed (Aug-Sep). Seed bought in village, so altitude of collection unknown; altitude given is its known range. Cones mature in 27-30 months: unique among pinyon pines (other spp in 18 months). Villagers stated that frost is rare, and snow unknown, even at the top of the species' range.
Mexico
19 November 1991. Miquihuana. Dry Pinus nelsonii/P. cembroides forest on limestone. No cones on P. cembroides here.
21
Pinus nelsonii
21
Pinus nelsonii
- Cone
Altitude 2380 m, 23°34'N, 99°47'W. Trees to 6 m. Cones from about 20 trees; only one to a few cones on each tree. Most seed still in cones.
Mexico

Photos : © Michael P. Frankis Previous Serie   Next Serie       

24 June 2000
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