California Nutmeg - Torreya californica
Not related to nutmeg, this California endemic is sparsely distributed in the coast ranges and the Sierra Nevada foothills. It may reach 75 feet in height with a trunk up to 2 feet in diameter. The needles are sharply-pointed and are twisted at the base, creating a planar configuration; they are glossy green above with stomatal lines beneath. The seed resembles that of a nutmeg with a fleshy green covering; it is very aromatic. However, the crushed foliage has an unpleasant scent. The trees typically grow in moist locations although they can be found on mountain slopes.