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ARALIACEAE

GINSENG FAMILY

Elizabeth McClintock

Shrub, woody vine, rarely perennial herb, tree; juvenile plant often unlike flowering plant
Stem generally branched
Leaves simple or compound, generally alternate; stipules ± fused to ± sheathing petiole base or 0
Inflorescence: umbels solitary to panicled; bracts deciduous or not
Flower generally bisexual, generally radial, generally < 5 mm; sepals generally 5, fused at base, inconspicuous, persistent; petals generally 5, free, ± white to green, deciduous; stamens generally 5, generally alternate petals; ovary inferior, chambers 1–15, 1-ovuled, styles as many as chambers, free or fused, persistent
Fruit: berry or drupe
Genera in family: 60–70 genera, 700 species: especially tropical, subtropical; medicinal (e.g. Panax , ginseng; Aralia , sarsaparilla), ornamental (e.g., Aralia, Fatsia, Hedera, Polyscias )
Reference: [Graham 1966 J Arnold Arbor 47:126–136]

ARALIA

SPIKENARD

Perennial, shrub, small tree
Stem erect
Leaves 1–3-ternate or -pinnate, deciduous; stipule ± fused to petiole base
Inflorescence: umbels in clusters of 2–few or in spreading panicles
Fruit: berry
Seeds 3–5
Species in genus: ± 30 species: North America, Asia, Malaysia
Etymology: (Latinized from old French Canadian, Aralie)

Native

A. californica S. Watson

ELK CLOVER

Perennial; roots large; juice milky
Stem 2–3 m, stout
Leaf 1–3-pinnate, 1–2 m, ± glabrous; petiole < 3 dm; leaflets 15–30 cm, ovate to oblong, serrate, base subcordate
Inflorescence 30–45 cm
Fruit ± 5 mm, spheric, black
Chromosomes: 2n=48
Ecology: Moist shade, canyons, streamsides
Elevation: < 2000 m.
Bioregional distribution: California Floristic Province
Distribution outside California: Oregon
Horticultural information: IRR or WET: 4, 5 &SHD: 3, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23.

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bioregional map for ARALIA%20californica being generated
 
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