What Is Aralia Cordata?
Aralia cordata is an upright herbaceous perennial plant native to Japan, Korea, and eastern China. Some of its common names are spikenard, herbal aralia, udo, Japanese spikenard, and mountain asparagus. It inhabits the slopes of woody embankments. The Aralia cordata species belongs to the Araliaceae family.
Every spring, the plant produces fresh branches that are blanched and used as a vegetable. The plant’s dried root has long been used as medicine in Korea. The young shoots have a fragrant flavor that is both robust and delicious. In addition to being used for food and medicine, the plant is also grown as a decorative.
Aralia cordata may be cultivated in neutral or acidic soils with a pH range between 5.0 and 7.5. Add the organic material to the clays and sands. It is simple to cultivate and does not require fertilizer.
The plant develops swiftly, reaching a height and breadth of 1.8 to 2.7 meters (5.9 to 8.2 ft.) in a single growing season. It can withstand freezing temperatures throughout the winter since it dies back and regrows in the spring, producing for at least six years.
It needs minimal effort, but the shoots must be blanched before consumption. It requires a climate with little to no drought and grows best in damp, rainy, and mountainous regions. Typically, it grows in the wild, although it may also be cultivated in fields, cellars, and nurseries.
The plant loves partial shade, although it may thrive in full shade or full sun as long as it has a continuous water supply.
What Does Aralia Cordata Look Like?
Aralia cordata is a perennial plant with hollow stems and palmately compound leaves. The leaves are large, ranging from 3-9 inches in length. The plant is primarily grown for its edible stems which have a crisp texture and mildly sweet flavor.
The stems can range from 6-40 inches in length, with a diameter of 2mm at the base and 0.8mm at the tip. Aralia cordata is both a dicot and a eudicot.
The leaves are alternating, big, and double to triple pinnate, with leaflets ranging in length from 7 to 15 centimeters (2.8 to 5.9 in) and width from 5 to 10 centimeters (2.0 to 3.9 in).
In late summer, the blooms appear in enormous umbels of 30 to 45 centimeters (12 to 18 in) in diameter, with each blossom tiny and white. The fruit is a little black drupe that is 3 millimeters (0.12 in) in diameter and is potentially hazardous to humans.
The plant grows to a height of 1.2 to 1.8 meters in the wild (3.9 to 5.9 ft.). In the spring, it has golden leaves, and in the summer, it has an abundance of huge brilliant green foliage. It has a thick and fat rootstock with branches ranging in length from 60 to 90 centimeters (2.0 to 3.0 feet).
When planted in rich soil, it can attain its full potential. It produces loose flower bunches 90 cm (3.0 ft.) in length during the summer, which is appealing to bees and flies, making it perfect for beekeepers. It may be cultivated from seed or by cuttings.
What Is Aralia Cordata Used For?
Aralia cordata is a popular food plant in Japan. It was brought into the United States in the early 1900s but was not widely popularized. The dried root has long been used as medicine in Korea to alleviate inflammation, fever, and discomfort.
It is used as a diuretic, anti-inflammatory, and sedative. The residents of Korea commonly use the plant as medicine for gastric distress and as a remedy for dysentery.
The leaves are eaten as vegetables in Japan. They are blanched before consumption, to get rid of any bitterness that they might possess. In Korea, fresh stems can be eaten like a salad with vinegar or salt. In China, the stems are typically consumed with soy sauce or salt added to them. The following are some of the uses of Aralia cordata;
Use as food:
Aralia cordata has a mildly sweet and delicious taste. The plant is unlikely to cause an allergic reaction in humans. The young shoots are usually eaten raw, or blanched before eating.
They may be consumed with vinegar, soy sauce, or salt added to them. You can also slice up the stems, boil them and use them in sushi or on top of rice.
The leaves can be used to wrap rice and other food, much like parsley. In Japan, they are chopped up with soy sauce and eaten as a snack. In Korea, the leaves are often used to wrap rice dumplings such as gimbap and tteokbokki. In China, the leaves are also used to wrap food; they are consumed as a staple vegetable there.
Use as a medicine:
The root of the Aralia cordata has been used as traditional medicine for centuries in both East Asia and North America. It is used to treat dysentery, hemorrhoids, inflammation, fever, gastritis, and other digestive problems. You can also use it to drink tea for the relief of asthma, cold and sore throat.
Aralia cordata is used for the treatment of gastric complaints. It has been claimed that it boosts healthy digestion and balance of digestive juices in the stomach, thereby improving digestion and relieving many gastric problems.
The leaves are commonly used to treat gastrointestinal problems such as dysentery, gastritis, bleeding piles, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), colitis, and other similar conditions.
Use as a spice:
Aralia cordata can be used as a culinary herb. It should be used sparingly, though, since it can cause gastrointestinal irritation. In Korea, the fresh roots are cooked with other vegetables and are served in a variety of dishes. Arugula has a strong scent and is often used to garnish dishes.
The plant is also widely cultivated in homes in China because of its medicinal properties, as well as its decorative value. You can also use the hot water extract of the plant for people who are suffering from colds, bronchitis, and coughs.
Use as a plant in the home:
Aralia cordata can be used as a plant in your home. It is considered to be an ideal indoor herb because its flowers are very beautiful and have an amazing scent.The leaves are also very fragrant and make a great addition to your home. You can hang them up if you wish, but they don’t require much water.
Aralia cordata is also a great addition to a garden if you are looking for a colorful and unique cultivar. The best way to choose this herb as a house plant is to find the one with the colors you want. This particular plant comes in a variety of colors such as green, red, white, and yellow, among others.
Use as a landscape plant:
Aralia cordata is a great landscape plant because it has an interesting look. It’s often used in Bonsai because it has the texture of wood and doesn’t need much sunlight like other plants. It grows in almost any kind of soil but can thrive better if you add mulch to your garden. You can also grow it in pots and containers.
You can also grow this plant in a hanging basket with its own steam, or you can use one of its branches to make a wreath.
Use as a prop:
Aralia cordata can be used as a prop for different things. The leaves are often used for wrapping and eating dumplings, so you can use them in your cooking or dangle them from ceilings. You can also hang the pods from ceilings and display them on tables to add some uniqueness to your home décor. The large, beautiful flowers of this plant are also great for decorating tables, too. You can display the plant directly in a pot or use it as part of an arrangement.
Is Aralia Cordata Deer Resistant?
Aralia Cordata is deer resistant. The only times it is susceptible to the attacks of deer are when they are young or when they are flowering. When they are young, the stems, leaves, and buds can be eaten by deer, but once they mature into adults these parts of the plant cannot be eaten by deer.
When flowering, the leaves can be consumed but not the stem or stalk. Nonetheless, this plant is still a good option for planting in your garden because it is beautiful and does not attract much attention from deer. You should also remember that deer are also sensitive to the smell of Aralia Cordata.
The smell is only noticeable when the plant flowers. The seeds are produced during flowering, which is a period when the deer avoid consuming it. The seeds that Aralia Cordata produces are also spread through the air rather than being eaten by deer. This ensures that they do not get deformed when passing through a deer’s digestive tract.
It also promotes germination within the soil, increasing its stability as a highly resistant seed. In addition, deer will not go for Aralia Cordata if it is in flower, because flowers have a strong smell and attract insects that are not good for deer’s health.
At this time of the year when deer are conscious of their presence, they realize that Aralia Cordata is a plant that does not have to be afraid of them because it is a plant without any threat to their existence.