Aralia spinosa L.
Devil's walkingstick, Devilís walking-stick, Prickly Ash, Hercules club, Angelica tree
Araliaceae (Ginseng Family)
A large, few-stemmed shrub,12-15 ft., can reach 20 ft. Each spring it shoots up a tall stem
covered with orange prickles. Enormous, divided, spiny leaves at the top of the stem
can be 3-4 ft. long and just as wide. Topping the umbrella of leaves are 1-4 ft. tall clusters of whitish flowers. Black fruits on bright pink fruiting stalks crown the plant in fall.
Image Gallery: 12 photo(s) available
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Tree Root Type: Tap Leaf Complexity: Bipinnate Leaf:
Green Autumn Foliage:
Black 1/2 inch Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug
AL , AR , CT , DE , FL , GA , IL , IN , KY , LA , ME , MD , MA , MS , MO , NJ , NY , NC , OH , OK , PA , RI , SC , TN , TX , VA , WV , DC Native Distribution:
FL to e. TX, n. to NY & Ohio R. valley; naturalized northward Native Habitat:
Open woods; thickets; flood plains; rocky pastures USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
CaCO3 Tolerance: High
Soil Description: Moist, well-drained, fertile to poor soils. pH tolerant. Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam.
Conditions Comments: Colonizes freely by rhizomes and suckers. These can be dug out, but A. spinosa is still far too aggressive for small spaces. A pioneering species in the wild, this plant often disappears as the forest develops around it.
Showy, Attractive, Fall conspicuous, Fast growing, Accent tree
or shrub. Occasionally planted in the Victorian era as a grotesque ornamental. Use Wildlife:
Seeds are favored by birds; leaves are browsed by deer. Nectar-insects, Nectar-butterflies, Nectar-bees, Browse, Fruit-birds Use Medicinal:
The aromatic spicy roots and fruit
were used by early settlers in home remedies, including a cure for toothaches. Conspicuous Flowers: