Kalopanax pictus

Common Name: Castor-aralia (a.k.a. Castor-leaved aralia)
Scientific Name: Kalopanax pictus
Family: Araliaceae
Growth Form: Tree
Native Range: China, Korea, Japan
Invasive Range: Boston area
Introduction: The Castor-aralia escaped from cultivation and is distributed by birds who are attracted to the fruit. 
Description: ·Leaves: Grow out of alternate whorls, simple, 5-7 palmate lobes, 16-26 cm (7-12 in.).  Dark, glossy green; yellow or red in fall.

·Twigs: Brown, very thick.

·Bark: Grows to be 13-20 m (40-60 ft.) tall.  Deeply ridged and furrowed.  Bark brown or black.  Shoots have thorns, even on young trees.

·Flowers: Appear July through August.  White, 2-3 cm (1 in.) in diameter.  At end of 14-28 cm (1-2 ft.) stalk.  Large bundles 14-28 cm (1-2 ft.) in diameter.

·Fruit: Appear in early fall.  Black.  1 cm (0.5 in.). Eaten by birds.
Threats: The Castor-aralia casts dense shade, stunting the growth of native vegetation.
Fun Facts: The Castor-aralia is commonly used as commercial timber.  In Asian medicine the bark of the stem is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis
Whole Tree
Leaf Glands
Whole tree
Bark with thorns and whorl
Young tree
Bark with thorns and leaf whorl