Aralia elata

Aralia elata

Aralia elata or also as Japanese Angelica-tree is an upright deciduous small tree or shrub up to 6 m in height, native to eastern Russia, China, Korea, and Japan. In Japan it is known as tara-no-ki, and In Korea, it is known as dureup namu (두릅나무). It prefers deep loamy soils in partial shade, but will grow in poorer soils and in full sun. The plant is sometimes cultivated, often in a variegated form, for its exotic appearance.

The bark is rough and gray with prickles. The leaves are alternate, large, 60-120 cm long, and double pinnate. The flowers are produced in large umbels in late summer, each flower small and white. The fruit is a small black drupe.

Aralia elata is closely related to the American species Aralia spinosa, with which it is easily confused.


In Japan, the shoots are eaten in the spring. They are picked from the end of the branches and are fried in a tempura batter. In Korean cuisine, its shoots called dureup are used for various dishes, such as dureup jeon (두릅전), that is a vareity of jeon (pancake-like dish) made by pan-frying the shoots covered with minced beef and batter. Dureup namul (두릅나물) or also called dureup muchim (두릅무침) is a dish made by parboiling dureup seasoned with gochujang (chili pepper paste).


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