OF THE CAROLINAS & GEORGIA

Spermatophytes (seed plants): Angiosperms (flowering plants): Eudicots: Core Eudicots: Rosids: Malvids: Sapindales

WEAKLEY'S FLORA (11/30/12):
Ailanthus altissima   FAMILY Simaroubaceae   NEW! Click to go to FSUS key


SYNONYMOUS WITH PLANTS NATIONAL DATABASE:
Ailanthus altissima   FAMILY Simaroubaceae

SYNONYMOUS WITH VASCULAR FLORA OF THE CAROLINAS (Radford, Ahles, & Bell, 1968) 104-01-001:
Ailanthus altissima   FAMILY Simaroubaceae

 

COMMON NAME:
Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven


         To see larger pictures, click or hover over the thumbnails.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913    pnd_aigl_001_lvd

        

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0301a_22a

January    Greenville County    SC

Lateral buds partly surrounded by the large, shield-shaped leaf scar, per Woody Plants of Kentucky and Tennessee.


click here to see other plants that look similar to this COMPARE leaf scars of Sumac and Tree-of-heaven

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm080317_001

March    Greenville County    SC

Clusters of wing-shaped fruit persistent on female trees, per Nonnative Invasive Plants of Southern Forests.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm160328_161

March    Greenville County    SC

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0204l_04

April    Greenville County    SC

The leaf scar is heart-shaped, per Winter Tree Finder.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm090417_001

April    Greenville County    SC

Parking lot

Interesting twig "architecture"...

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm210401_9067

April    Polk County    NC

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm090521_021

May    Greenville County    SC

Tree-of-heaven on left; Black Locust on right.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm090524_032

May    Pickens County    SC

Roadside ditch

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm110514_544

May    Greenville County    SC

Leaflets entire except for basal teeth, each with a prominent gland beneath, per Vascular Flora of the Carolinas.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm170512_479

May    Greenville County    SC

Flowers in large (often 4dm long) terminal panicles, per Vascular Flora of the Carolinas.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm170512_489

May    Greenville County    SC

5 sepals each < 1mm long; 5 petals each 1.5-2.5mm long, per Vascular Flora of the Carolinas.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm170512_489b

May    Greenville County    SC

Petals densely pubescent near the base. (Staminate flowers have 10 stamens.), per Vascular Flora of the Carolinas.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm170512_496

May    Greenville County    SC

Five petals (or maybe sometimes 6?).

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm170512_498

May    Greenville County    SC

Extrafloral nectaries can be found on the leaflet margins, per Many Plants Have Extrafloral Nectaries Helpful to Beneficials (Mizell, 2001) .

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm190506_8177

May    Greenville County    SC

Swamp Rabbit Trail

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

Keith Bradley    kab_a_altissima_73609

May    Polk County    NC

Colonizing even undisturbed forests and outcompeting the native vegetation, per Weakley's Flora (2012).

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    s000504_bc

May    Greenville County    SC

Leaves w 11-29 leaflets, entire except for rounded basal gland-tipped teeth, per Woody Plants of the Blue Ridge.


click here to see other plants that look similar to this COMPARE leaves of Sumac and Tree-of-heaven

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0306b_16

June    Greenville County    SC

Roadside

Fruit a schizocarp w 2-5 samaroid [samara-like] mericarps each w a single seed, per Vascular Flora of the Carolinas.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0306b_23

June    Greenville County    SC

Parking lot

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0306h_22

June    Greenville County    SC

Shade-intolerant, Ailanthus thrives near the reflected warmth of buildings, per Book of Field and Roadside.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0306h_25

June    Greenville County    SC

Petiolules 0.2-1cm long, per Vascular Flora of the Carolinas.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0406l_11

June    Greenville County    SC

Populates city alleys, vacant lots, railroad embankments, dump sites..., per Book of Field and Roadside.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm060709_050

July    Fayette County    WV

Adapts to a wide variety of soils, moisture conditions and temperatures, per Book of Field and Roadside.

image of Ailanthus altissima, Ailanthus, Tree-of-heaven

JK Marlow    jkm0408f_01

August    Greenville County    SC

Parking lot

 

WEAKLEY'S FLORA (11/30/12):
Ailanthus altissima   FAMILY Simaroubaceae

SYNONYMOUS WITH PLANTS NATIONAL DATABASE:
Ailanthus altissima   FAMILY Simaroubaceae

SYNONYMOUS WITH VASCULAR FLORA OF THE CAROLINAS (Radford, Ahles, & Bell, 1968) 104-01-001:
Ailanthus altissima   FAMILY Simaroubaceae

 

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43

Tree
Perennial
Polygamous

Non-native: east Asia

Habitat: Roadsides, forests, disturbed areas, including cities, especially in moist, fertile soils, per Weakley's Flora

map
NEW! Click here to see a map from Weakley's Flora of the Southeastern US showing range and abundance.

Click here to see a map showing all occurrences known to SERNEC, a consortium of southeastern herbaria. (Zoom in to see more detail.)


INVASIVE

This plant is causing problems in natural areas outside its native range, according to authorities such as:

 

LEAVES:
Deciduous
Odd-pinnately compound: 15-27 leaflets
Alternate

FLOWER:
Spring/Summer
Yellowish-green
Bisexual & unisexual
Radially symmetrical
5 sepals
5 petals
10 stamens in staminate flowers/2-3 stamens in perfect/absent in pistillate

FRUIT:
Summer/Fall
Pink
Schizocarp of samaroid mericarps

 

TO LEARN MORE about this plant, look it up in a good book!



 


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