Rhus chinensis Mill.

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Credits

Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Rhus chinensis' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhus/rhus-chinensis/). Accessed 2022-05-24.

Genus

Synonyms

  • R. javanica of many authors, not L.
  • R. osbeckii [DC.] Carr.
  • R. semi-alata Murr.

Glossary

bloom
Bluish or greyish waxy substance on leaves or fruits.
panicle
A much-branched inflorescence. paniculate Having the form of a panicle.
imparipinnate
Odd-pinnate; (of a compound leaf) with a central rachis and an uneven number of leaflets due to the presence of a terminal leaflet. (Cf. paripinnate.)
rachis
Central axis of an inflorescence cone or pinnate leaf.

References

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Credits

Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Rhus chinensis' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhus/rhus-chinensis/). Accessed 2022-05-24.

A small deciduous tree, sometimes 20 ft or more high, with a short trunk and a rounded gauntly branched head; branchlets yellowish, downy; winter-buds brown, velvety. Leaves pinnate, varying in size according to the vigour of the plant, ordinarily from 8 to 15 in. long, and composed of seven to thirteen leaflets, between each pair of which the common leaf-stalk is winged. Leaflets stalkless, oval, usually 212 to 4 (occasionally 6) in. long, and about half as wide, pointed, the margins conspicuously round- or sharply toothed, the under­surface covered with velvety down. Flowers in a large, terminal panicle 8 or 10 in. long and wide, yellowish white, produced in August. Fruits small, orange-coloured.

R. chinensis is widely spread in Asia, throughout the Himalaya (from Hazara in the west to Bhutan in the east), Assam, upper Burma, Siam, Indo-China, throughout China to Korea, Japan, and Formosa, and it has also been found in Sumatra. Miller grew the species from seeds received from Paris in 1737, but the plants were destroyed in the winter of 1740, and it was probably not established in cultivation in Britain until the 1870s. R. chinensis varies in the degree of winging of the leaf-rachis and the name var. roxburghii (DC.) Rehd. has been given to plants where the leaf-rachis is not or only slightly winged.

As a flowering plant R. chinensis is one of the handsomest of the sumachs, although it does not bloom so freely here as on the Continent. It may be cut down annually like R. glabra ‘Laciniata’. In some places it colours brilliantly in the autumn.