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A deciduous tree from 12 to 30 ft high; young shoots glabrous. Leaves 3 to 6 in. long and wide, five-lobed, slightly heart-shaped or truncate at the base, rather glaucous beneath; lobes ovate, with long drawn-out points, irregularly and sparsely toothed. Occasionally the leaves are quite glabrous at maturity, but often they have tufts of yellowish hairs in the axils of the veins. Flowers numerous, in panicles 2 to 4 in. long, greenish white. Fruits glabrous, in pendulous panicles; keys 11⁄4 in. long; wings 2⁄5 in. wide, the pair forming an angle of about 120°.
This species is now again in cultivation in Britain, introduced from China by Gordon Harris. It is closely related to the later-named A. wilsonii and also to the Himalayan A. campbellii.