A poorly known taxon confined to western China where grazing is thought to be a major threat throughout its range.
China: W Sichuan, NW Yunnan, SE Xizang [Tibet]. Its altitudinal range is uncertain but probably between 2500 and 3500 metres above sea-level. The global population of this taxon is poorly known, in part due to misidentifications but also to incomplete inventories of remote mountain areas.
More data based on correctly identified observations or specimens are needed to establish the extent of occurence (EOO) and the area of occupancy (AOO) more accurately. For this reason, the AOO has here been calculated with a wider than recommended grid in order to compensate for this. Some decline is inferred from observed intensive grazing in some of its habitat. Consequently it is assessed as Vulnerable. The species as a whole has been assessed as Near Threatened.
The tree form is apparently quite rare, but its remoteness has until the present been a safeguard against threats from human interference. On the other hand, increased pressure from grazing is likely to have had a negative impact on regeneration in certain areas (Farjon, pers. com. 2000 (in NW Yunnan))
Further surveys are required to determine if this taxon is present in any protected areas.