Tibet Builds Park for Ancient Trees

Southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region has built a park for the better protection of 1, 000 ancient cypresses, one of which is said to be 2,500 years old, in Nyingchi Prefecture.

The cypresses, growing on a hillside over 3,000 meters above the sea level and about nine hectares in area, belong to a species unique to Tibet. They are under second-class state protection. The average height and diameter of the trees are 30 meters and 1 meter, respectively.

The biggest of the cypresses, also the biggest trees of their kind in China, is nearly 50 meters in height and 5.8 meters in diameter.

"It has been growing for at least 2,500 years," experts said.

In 1982, local people built a protection zone for the cypresses, which are called by local residents "Sacred Trees".

The provincial government of Guangdong, in south China, donated some 3.6 million yuan (US$450,000) to help build the park.

Nyingchi is located on the lower reaches of the Yarlung Zangbo River, geographically lower than nearby areas, and having a mild and moist climate, making it an ideal habitat for the trees.

(People's Daily 02/22/2001)

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