Pistacia chinensis. CHINESE PISTACHE. China
ANACARDIACEAE (Sumac or cashew family)
Examples are in the east courtyards of Wilbur Hall, and behind Memorial Church on Escondido Mall. Numerous trees provide good fall color on Bowdoin Street. The very handsome specimens on Santa Teresa Street at Lomita Drive and in front of the Humanities Center were planted in 1954 by Jack Shoup, director of the Alumni Association. Among recent additions is the row of nine on the south side of the David Packard Building; more are behind the William Hewlett Teaching Center.
P. vera from Syria and parts east is distinguished by tending to have only three leaflets and, of course, the much larger fruits containing the popular pistachio nuts of commerce. In Persia the name was 'pistah.' The tasty nut clearly arrived in the Mediterranean a long time ago, because the Greeks had a name for it, 'pistakion,' whose Latin form 'pistacium' was the basis of Linnaeus' name Pistacia for the genus. The Atlas pistache P. atlantica is used as stock onto which to graft P. vera. It was pistachio nuts that Jacob sent to Egypt. Another species (P. lentiscus), the mastic tree, is mentioned in the book of Daniel, where the dirty old Elders falsely accuse Susannah of adultery.
Chinese pistache allergenicity: male plants shed fair amount of wind-bourne pollen in the spring, but allergenicity is generally