Turkish Journal of Agriculture and Forestry




Turkish fir (Abies bornmuelleriana Mattf.) and Trojan fir (Abies equi-trojani (Aschers. Et Sint. Ex Boiss) Mattf.) are economically and ecologically important endemic species to Turkey. These species are also becoming increasingly popular in Europe and North America due to their suitable characteristics for use as Christmas trees coupled with their pest resistance. Provenance features, as well as needle and cone characteristics and seed germination ability, of three Turkish fir and two Trojan fir populations were studied. Provenance features (vigor score, crown score, and color) and mother tree characteristics (height class, diameter at breast height, and height) were very similar between species and among populations within species. Needles of Turkish fir were significantly (P < 0.05) longer and wider than those of Trojan fir. Turkish fir also had wider cones and a higher cone width/length ratio than Trojan fir. There were moderate, positive, and significant correlations between needle-cone characteristics and location variables (elevation, latitude, and longitude). Needle size tended to increase northwards, eastwards, and upwards along an altitudinal gradient. Cone width and the cone width/length ratio showed a weak trend of increasing northwards, while the cone width also showed a weak trend of increasing eastwards. Bract and cone length were not significantly correlated with any of the location variables. The overall mean cumulative germination percentage of Turkish fir seed (57%) was significantly higher (P < 0.05) than that of Trojan fir (36%). The natural genetic resources of both species should be conserved and managed sustainably to preserve the variation in their endemic locations because of their valuable benefits to Turkey and other countries.


Christmas trees, firs, genetic conservation, Trojan fir, Turkish fir

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