Genus: Rice-paper plant

Tetrapanax

Photo/Illustration: 
Jennifer Benner
Rice-paper plant (Tetrapanax)
tet-trah-PAN-aks
Synonyms:  Aralia
Araliaceae
The genus Tetrapanax has just one species ( T. papyrifer ), a suckering, evergreen shrub that can be grown as a small tree. It is native to woodland in southern China and Taiwan and produces large, lobed leaves and umbels of white flowers in panicle-like inflorescences that attract bees. Flowers are followed by clusters of black fruit. Grow in a sheltered border where hardy, or against a warm wall, in a container, or in a cool greenhouse where not hardy.  
Noteworthy characteristics:  Large leaves; wooly flowers; black fruit. The flowers attract bees. May be invasive in some areas. Suckers can come up as far as 20 feet away from the parent plant.
Care:  Tolerates any well-drained soil in full sun. Provide shelter from wind. Remove suckers at the extremities to control spread.
Propagation: 

Sow seed in a cold frame in the fall, or remove suckers in spring or summer.

Problems: 

Infrequent.

Species, varieties and clutivars for genus Tetrapanax

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Rice-paper plant
Tetrapanax papyrifer