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Acanthopanax giraldii Harms

Modern name

Eleutherococcus giraldii (Harms) Nakai

A deciduous shrub 6 to 9 ft high; young shoots very dark green, densely covered with slender, bristle-like, mostly deflexed spines 18 to 14 in. long. Leaves composed of three to five leaflets borne on a slender main-stalk 112 to 3 in. long and occasionally prickly. Leaflets scarcely stalked, narrowly oval or oblanceolate, doubly toothed except near the base, slender pointed; 1 to 212 in. long, 13 to 34 in. wide; usually quite glabrous. Flowers small, greenish, crowded on a usually solitary umbel, each flower on a glabrous stalk 14 to 12 in. long, the umbel itself on a main-stalk 14 to 34 in. long. Fruits black, 14 to 13 in. wide, crowned with a very short but distinctly five-lobed style.

Native of Central and N. China, where Henry, Wilson, and Purdom collected it. Forrest also found it, or something very like it, more to the south-west (Nos. 10875 and 12585). It was introduced to cultivation in 1912. It resembles A. senticosus in the dense furnishing of decurved spines on the branchlets, but that species differs very much in its larger leaflets, larger much longer-stalked umbels, and longer unlobed style. A. giraldii is about the sparsest in its flowering of the cultivated species, the flower-heads being small and solitary. It grows well at Kew, the leafless shoots in winter being conspicuous on account of their thick covering of whitish spines. Flowers in July.



Other species in the genus