Monday, May 10, 2010

Alangium platanifolium: an interesting and attractive large shrub native to eastern Asia

Ours began flowering last week just beside the path leading from the Asian Collections Parking Lot to the GCA Circle. It is, typically, vase-shaped with pleasantly coarse dark green leaves and these very curious flowers. Graham Stuart Thomas described them as "fuchsia-like" while Dan Hinkley likened them to Dodecatheon, the Shooting-star. I guess there's some resemblance, but really they're unique. I know, only from the literature, that they produce brighly colored blue to violet fruits that are reputed to be striking against the yellow fall foliage.

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