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Chinese Plant Names | Family List | Cornaceae | Aucuba

Aucuba japonica Thunb.


Description from Flora of China

Shrubs 1–3 m tall; branches dichotomous, green, stout. Leaf blade abaxially light green, sometimes variegated with yellow spots, adaxially shiny green, narrowly elliptic to ovate-elliptic, seldom widely lanceolate, 8–20 × 5–12 cm, leathery, base subrounded or broadly cuneate, margin with 2–4(–6) pairs of teeth on upper half, or entire, apex acuminate. Staminate inflorescences paniculate, 7–10 cm, pubescent. Carpellate inflorescences shortly paniculate, (1–)2–3 cm, pubescent. Staminate flowers pubescent; petals subovate or ovate-lanceolate, 3.5–4.5 × 2–2.5 mm, apex shortly cuspidate, ca. 0.5 mm; stamens ca. 1.25 mm; pedicel 3–5 mm. Carpellate flowers purple red or dark red, abaxially glabrous; petals subovate to elliptic-lanceolate, apex caudate; ovary sparsely pubescent; style stout; stigma oblique (or leaning to one side; pedicel 2–3 mm, pubescent, bracteoles 2. Fruit dark purple or black, ovoid, ca. 2 cm × 5–7 mm in diam. Fl. Mar–Apr. 2n = 16, 32.

Moist rich soils in valleys with dense forests, thickets, streamsides, near shaded moist rocks. Taiwan, S Zhejiang; also widely cultivated as an ornamental in parks and gardens throughout China [Japan, Korea].


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