Japanese spindle tree
|Botanical Name||Euonymus japonicus|
|Origin||Japan, China, Korea|
DescriptionMuch branched, evergreen shrub or small tree up to 7 m high. Twigs green, smooth, often wrinkled when dry. Leaves opposite, oval 2.5-7 mm long. Flowers in bunches with 4 green petals 6-10 mm. Fruit capsule 4-celled, deep pink, exposing bright orange after opening. Widely cultivated as a variegated form which reverts to green form when it naturalises. Can be distinguished from spindle tree (E. europaeus) by its rounded un-lobed capsule. E. europaeus is deciduous.
Where is it found?Waste places, shrubland, forest margins and disturbed forest, coastal areas.
Why is it a problem?Sometimes seen as a garden escape on forest margins and in disturbed forest.
How does it spread?Widely cultivated in gardens for attractive, brightly coloured fruit and variegated foliage. Garden escape. Seeds dispersed by birds.
How do I get rid of it?
Hand pull seedlings. Chainsaw larger trees and treat stump with herbicide.
Hand pull seedlings and fell larger trees. Follow-up for seedlings will be required.