Aralia elata – Japanese Angelica Trees (eastern Asia)
Habit: Umbrella-shaped large shrub or small tree with several stems, 3-5 (7) m tall, 3m wide; stems with few twigs, thorny; slow-growing.
Flowers: Pretty white, feathery inflorescences like umbels, August to September, very persistent.
Fruits: Reddish, later black, juicy berries; September to October, numerous; moderately poisonous; eaten by birds.
Leaves: Very decorative, almost tropical, doubly pinnate leaves, up to 1 m long; shoots late; many autumn hues, usually yellow-green to orange, October.
Roots: Shallow with runners.
Demands: Sun to semi-shade, prefers warm, protected areas, suffers from late frost; tolerates urban climates; needs wind protection as leaves otherwise break.
Soil: Fresh to moist areas, tolerates short droughts; nutritious, loamy or sandy-loamy substrates, susceptible to frost on clay.
Note: The individual stems are short-lived, only living 10 years. They are regularly replaced by new shoots.
Hardiness: Zone 6