seeds of Aralia elata (Aralia chinensis var elata)

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Aralia elata Samen
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Aralia elata also goes by the names Aralia chinensis var. elata (Mig) Lavalee and Aralia spinose var. elata (Miq) Sarg. This plant is also recognized by a number of common names including Chinese angelica-tree, Korean angelica-tree and Japanese angelica-tree. Aralia elata has its origins in Korea, Japan, Eastern Russia and China. The plant is a deciduous shrub that grows to heights of up to 10m. The tree has a rough prickly bark and leaves that are double pinnate where each leaf consists of multiple leaflets. The leaves are also quite large, growing to a length of between 60 and 120cm. Flowers blossom in late summer in big umbels. The flowers are rather small and white in colour. The inflorescence that bears the flowers is 12 to 24 inches long and has multiple stems. The flowers are insect pollinated, after which develop the purple coloured fruit called drupes. Drupes are a favoured delicacy by many birds. Curiously enough, Aralia elata has both male and female reproductive parts and doesn’t have any frost tenderness. Aralia elata is widely considered an invasive species given its seeds are spread by birds. The plant grows by means of suckers which could be disastrous for other plants. One should, therefore, keep this information in mind when growing it. The shoots of the plant have been a regular fixture in Japanese and Korean cuisine for many years. The plant also has medicinal properties which have been used in the treatment of diabetes, jaundice and ulcers. Aralia elata also serves as an ornamental plant owing to it beautiful flowers and lush foliage. Aralia elata thrives in loamy soils and the shade. Exposure to constant sunlight and poor soils will have the opposite effect. The plant also prefers soils that are slightly acidic. Aralia elata, unlike many plant species, can handle the effects of pollution.
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