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Aralia elata

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© RHS 2002

Characteristics

Plant type

Shrub or Tree

Habit

Bushy

Resilience

Hardiness

old H4 (hardy)

Colour

Flower

Cream in Autumn and Summer

Foliage

Green in Spring and Summer
Orange and Yellow in Autumn

Fruit

Black in Autumn

Size

Ultimate height

8-12 metres

Ultimate spread

wider than 8 metres

Time to ultimate height

10-20 years


Preferred common name

angelica tree

Family

Araliaceae


Aralia can be deciduous trees, shrubs or perennials, with large, simple or pinnately compound leaves and tiny greenish-white flowers in large terminal clusters, followed by small black fruits

A. elata is a large deciduous shrub or small open tree to 10m, with very large bipinnate leaves at the tips of stout, spiny stems. Flowers tiny, cream, in large billowy panicles

Other common names

  • Japanese angelica tree
  • Japanese spikenard

Synonym(s)

  • Aralia chinensis misapplied
  • Aralia chinensis var. nuda
  • Aralia spinosa misapplied

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Part shade

Aspect

  • East-facing or West-facing
  • Sheltered

Cultivation

Grow in moderately fertile, well-drained soil in partial shade. Shelter from strong winds that may damage the leaves

Soil

  • Moist but well-drained
  • Neutral
  • Loam or Sand

Propagation

Propagate by seed when ripe or root cuttings and suckers. Variegated cultivars must be grafted

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Architectural or Low Maintenance


How to care

Pruning

Pruning group 1

Pests

Flower stems susceptible to damage by aphids;foliage to thrips and glasshouse red spider mite

Diseases

Generally disease free