Aralia elata (Miq.) Seem.
Coefficient of Conservatism: *
Coefficient of Wetness: 5
Wetness Index: UPL
Physiognomy: Ad Shrub

Aralia elata seedling on weedy bank A. A. Reznicek seedling on weedy bank

A native of Asia, apparently rarely spread from cultivation into disturbed areas and forest edges, probably mostly by root suckers. First collected in 1923, in Washtenaw Co.

This is a tall erect prickly shrub or small tree. Specimens are mostly not explicit as to whether the plant was truly established outside of cultivation. In addition, herbarium specimens of these large-leaved plants are generally very incomplete, and most specimens were originally named A. spinosa L., Hercules-club, a less commonly cultivated species native farther east and south in the United States, with umbels in an elongated panicle (as long as a meter). See Moore, Glenn, & Ma (2009) for more details.

Other species of woody Aralia besides these two are occasionally cultivated, however, and some of the incomplete specimens could conceivably represent these. 


Kalamazoo County
Oakland County
Washtenaw County


MICHIGAN FLORA ONLINE. A. A. Reznicek, E. G. Voss, & B. S. Walters. February 2011. University of Michigan. Web. November 26, 2022.