Botanical Name:Alangium platanifolium
Family : Alangiaceae
Genus : Alangium
Synonyms : Marlea platanifolia – Siebold.&Zucc.
Habitat : E. Asia – China, Japan. Woodland thickets, 1200 – 2100 metres in W. China. Woodland Garden; Dappled Shade;
A decidious Shrub growing to 3m by 2m. This outstanding understory shrub can become a small, wide-spreading tree of considerable beauty at maturity. The large (16-21cm long by 13-15cm wide), broadly ovate yellowish green leaves resemble those of the London plane (Platanus × hispanica). They are variable in shape but are generally tri-lobed, forward pointing toward the apex, with cordate bases. Often the acuminate lobes are twisted, adding to the distinctive foliar texture of this plant. In the spring the leaves unfold in the manner of hands in prayer and then turn a glorious yellow in the autumn. The flowers are white and appear in late June along the undersides of main horizontal branches often hidden by the verdant foliage. They are borne in 1- to 4-flowered cymes from the leaf axils of the previous year’s growth. Each flower consists of 6 petals narrowly strap-shaped and slightly twisted, forming a corolla tube at the base. Each petal reflexes to the midpoint to expose the bright yellow stamens and style. The pendulous, fleshy, egg-shaped fruit, coloured porcelain blue to dark violet, provides a stunning contrast to the golden fall leaf display.
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It is hardy to zone 8. It is in flower from June to July. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)
The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires moist soil.
Succeeds in any moderately fertile well-drained soil. Requires full sun and a sheltered position. A fairly hardy plant, but it does not succeed outdoors at Kew, the soft pithy shoots being cut back by winter cold. It grows well in Gloucestershire. This species is closely related to A. chinense.
Seed – we have no details for this species but suggest sowing the seed in a greenhouse in the spring. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out in early summer and consider giving them some protection from the cold for their first winter outdoors. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in sand in a frame.
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Young leaves – cooked.
Medicinal Actions & Uses:-
The root is used in the treatment of rheumatism and other bone diseases.
Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
The leaves and the bark of the root are used as an insecticide. The leaves and stem bark according to another report.