Parrotia Persica

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Parrotia Persica


(Russian common name, ironwood), a deciduous tree of the family Hamamelidaceae. It attains a height of 14–25 m. Its trunk sometimes puts forth branches as far as the ground, and the branches often take root and fuse with each other as well as with the branches of neighboring trees, such as hornbeam, zelkova, and maple. The bark is gray, in places reddish brown, and peeling. The leaves are leathery and obovate or elliptical. The blossoms are without petals, and two to five blossoms are gathered in heads at the ends of shortened shoots. The calyx has five to seven lobes, and there are five to seven stamens and a half-inferior ovary. The fruit is a woody bivalvular pod, and blossoms appear prior to leafing. The tree may live as long as 200 years.

The species may be found in relict, broad-leaved forests in Azerbaijan (Talysh) as well as in northern Iran (the southern shore of the Caspian Sea), where it grows in lowlands and mountains (up to 700 m above sea level and sometimes higher), on the banks of rivers and streams, and in ravines with moist or, more rarely, dry, rocky soil. The wood is compact and heavy (with a density of 0.9–1.05 g per cu cm), splits easily, lacks resilience, and is very hard and durable (hence the name); it is rose-colored with a brown tint. The wood is used for making certain machine parts, works of art, and decorative veneer.

Ironwood is also the common name of other plants with hard wood, such as the Musaferrea in India, Ixoraferrea in the Antilles, Caesalpinia ferrea in Brazil, Stadmannia sideroxylon on Mauritius, Argania sideroxylon in Morocco, and several species of the genus Sideroxylon.


Safarov, I. “Ekologo-biologicheskaia kharakteristika zheleznogo dere va.”Tr. in-ta botaniki AN Azerbaidzhanskoi SSR, 1952, vol. 16.
Derev’ia i kustarniki SSSR vol. 3. Moscow-Leningrad, 1954.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
Mentioned in ?
References in periodicals archive ?
(2010) reported the lowest plasticity value for the number of vein pairs and base angle in Parrotia persica along an elevational gradient.
Morphological plasticity of Parrotia persica leaves in eastern of Hyrcanain forests (Iran) is related to altitude.
(from Buxaceae) Juglans regia I.(from Juglandaceae) Parrotia persica. D.C.(from Hamamelidaceae) Quercus p ersica.
In diffuse porous wood of Quercus sp , Parrotia persica, Juglans regia the vessels are solitary or distributed in radial clusters of 2-4 cells.
If I was asked to choose three species from among the larger trees renowned for their tints, at the top of my list would be the Persian ironwood tree, parrotia persica. There are two varieties, one upright and large, the other of smaller habit with spreading branches covered in early autumn with numerous tints.
We have many different, spectacular autumn colours - from the butter yellow of Acer cappadocicum with its glossy palmate leaves, through the orange red of Cercidiphyllums and Norway maple to the reds of the Red oak and Parrotia persica (Ironwood) and the deep purple hues of some of the Spindle bushes (Euonymus sp).
Parrotia persica is also a suitable type for most gardens.
For a startling show of red, amber and gold (followed by tiny red flowers during the winter), the Persian ironwood (Parrotia persica) is wonderful.
Cornus kousa Chinensis Cotinus coggygria Enkianthus Hamamelis Berberis x carminea Buccaneer or Pirate King Amelanchier lamarckii Prunus Hillieri Parrotia persica Sorbus vilmorinii Koelreuteria paniculata Callicarpa Viburnum opulus Xanthocarpum Malus Golden Hornet Sorbus cashmeriana
Try Fothergilla if your garden has acid soil, or Parrotia persica for a larger space.