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Maytenus magellanica (hard log mayten; leña dura in Spanish) is a small evergreen tree from the genus Maytenus, up to 5 meters (16 ft), in the Celastraceae. It grows in southern Argentinamarker and Chilemarker from 36ºS to Cape Hornmarker (56ºS). It has toothed leaves and is used as ornamental. As its native range includes the subpolar Tierra del Fuegomarker, the plant's hardiness is appreciated and it has been successfully introduced in the Faroe islandsmarker. It has been also planted in the North Pacific Coast of the United Statesmarker .


Leaves alternate, petiole 2–6 mm long, laminae elliptic-lanceolate 2–6 × 1,5–3 cm, thick and coriaceous, apex and base attenuate, irregularly serrate margins. Stipules reddish, deciduous. Flowers hermaphrodite or unisexual, in groups of 2–3 on the axillas; five sepals about 1 mm long; five petals wine colored in 2–3,5 mm, ovary reduced in male flowers with five stamens; in female, the ovoid ovary ends in a short style and this in its turn, in flat bilobulate stigmas. Fruit capsule in 6–8 × 5 mm, two valves which contain 1 to 2 seeds.

Distribution and ecology

This shrub is relatively widespread and can endure rather harsh settings of windblown Patagonia including rocky soils of the Patagonian steppes. Distributed in southern Chile and Argentina, it is found as far south as the gelid climate of Tierra del Fuegomarker. An example of its occurrence in the northern part of its range is the environment of Cueva del Milodon Natural Monumentmarker.

Line notes


  • Benoit, I. L., ed. 1989. Libro Rojo de la Flora Terrestre de Chile (1ª Parte) CONAF. Santiago de Chile. 157 p.
  • Hoffman , Adriana. 1982. Flora silvestre de Chile, Zona Araucana. Edición 4. Fundación Claudio Gay, Santiago. 258p.
  • Muñoz, M. 1980. Flora del Parque Nacional Puyehue. Editorial Universitaria, Santiago, Chile. 557p.
  • C. Michael Hogan, Cueva del Milodon, Megalithic Portal, 13 April, 2008 [456889]

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