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Discovery of the oldest "Nghien" tree (Burretiodendron hsienmu) in Vietnam

26 January 2011 | 03:39:00 PM

In response to a Heritage Tree Conservation event initiated by VACNE, a research group lead by the Chairman of the Cao Bang Association for Conservation of Nature and Environment (CACNE), Mr. Dinh Ngoc Hai has discovered a Nghien tree that is among the most ancient in Vietnam.

VACNE- Heritage trees are historically and culturally significant to the places where they are found. These trees have a profound ecological legacy, which not only invokes an emotional response, but whose genetic material is important to maintain native species populations. These trees are chosen based on their age, size, appearance, and cultural and historical significance. The protection of them, and the collection of their seeds can ensure the sustained existence of important tree species.
In this page we will show articles about heritage tree stories in Vietnam, and around the world

          Seventy kilometers away from Cao Bang City, this Nghien tree grows at the side of a road leading to the Lung Tung Village, in Kim Loan Commune, in Ha Lang District. It is approximately 50 m high, with its trunk diameter measuring 2.5 m around, and is nearly 1,000 years old. According to the indigenous local people of the area, there are a number of ancient evergreen Nghien trees in the forests of the limestone mountainous area of this specific region; however, this tree is the most ancient.
          According to Mr. Nguyen Van Cau, head of the Kim Loan Commune, the main reason why this Nghien tree has not been damaged and has enjoyed such a long life is that it grows in a ‘sacred area’. The local community believes that ancient trees in the ‘sacred area’ contain spirits. The legend dictates that the forest god will punish anyone who cuts down a tree in that area, and that that person might loose their, or their family members’ lives. In addition, when the ancient trees are cut down, people in the village might encounter horrible disasters.
          In the Eastern areas of the Cao Bang Province, there are many ‘sacred forests’ in which rare genetic resources are conserved (including forests of ancient Nghien trees). Conservation of these occur due to the spirit customs of the "Tay-Nung" indigenous groups in Cao Bang Province. It also expresses equitable and respectful behavior between humans and the environment.

Mr. Dinh Ngoc Hai, the Chairman of the CACNE at the Nghien tree
(, 15/07/2010) 

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