Plants: Aralia elata 'Variegata' - Japanese angelica tree

Posted by 12.08. 2014 21:18:41 (17923 readers)

If you are looking for an architectural plant that will attract passers-by’s eyes but will require zero maintenance at the same time and on top of that will be hardy enough not to worry about it in winter, have a look at this Japanese angelica tree. Could the leaves look like angel’s wings to be given this name? Only God knows. What we know is that this tree is a must have for those who love exotic appeal in their gardens.

Aralia elata 'Variegata' - Japanese angelica tree

Variegata is an attractive version of angelica tree with creamy-white variegated leaf margins. Its bi-pinnate leaves are up to 1 meter long, compound of 3-5 cm long, ovate leaflets, pale or silvery green on the reverse. The leaves grow horizontally from a single stem (usually), making nearly flat layers of foliage. They fall down early in the season but before they do they change colour to fiery orange and burgundy red. At the end of summer it makes huge, erect panicles of numerous but small, creamy white flowers that may be followed by non-edible (not poisonous) purple-black berries hanging in long racemes.

Angelica tree makes a great looking specimen in a Japanese-styled garden, or can be used in an exotic type of garden where it can fully substitute a palm tree with its large frond-like leaves.

The plant typically grows as one stem from the ground and makes only short side branches when young, unless a multi-stemmed form was selected in a nursery. To achieve a tree-like form we recommend cutting off the top where you wish the crown to start. Young plants have spines and small thorns along the stem which disappear with age.

Grow it in almost any soil type, alkaline or acidic (while acidic will enhance autumn colours), but always well-drained. It likes equally moist soil throughout the season but will take drought once established. On the contrary it may lose leaves in long periods of rain if grown in water-logged soil. Aralia virtually thrives on neglect. It requires no maintenance. Suckers may appear sporadically. Pest and disease free. Fully hardy to min. -34°C, possibly more.

Size/type: medium-sized shrub
Usual height: 2-4m
Usual width: 2-4m
Leaves: deciduous broadleaf
Colour of leaves: varigated - white a green
Flowers: showy
Colour of flowers: cream
Blooming time: august - september
Location: full to partial sun
Usda zone (lowest): 4 (down to -34°c)
Belongs to categories: deciduous broadleaf, summer blooms, exotics

Aralia elata 'Variegata' - Japanese angelica tree

Zahradnictví SAFRO Milan Havlis
155 00 Praha Stodůlky, Za Mototechnou 2673/-11, Czech Republic

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