Chinese parasoltree USDA PLANTS Symbol: FISI2
U.S. Nativity: Exotic
Habit: Shrub or Subshrub Hardwood Trees
Firmiana simplex (L.) W. Wight

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Taxonomic Rank: Magnoliopsida: Malvales: Sterculiaceae
Native Range: China, Japan (REHD); East Asia from Ryukyus to Vietnam (BAIL);

Appearance
Firmiana simplex, parasoltree, is a deciduous tree native to Asia. It has green stems and bark. F. simplex has a dense, upright, oval canopy and grows from 35-50 ft. (10-15 m) tall with a spread of between 15-20 ft. (4.6-6 m).
Foliage
The alternate, bright green, palmately veined, three to five-lobed leaves of F. simplex are extremely large with each leaf reaching up to 12 in. (30.5 cm) across. The foliage of F. simplex often turns bright yellow in fall.
Flowers
Firmiana simplex has abundant showy slightly fragrant flowers that appear in late spring or early summer. The flowers are held in terminal, large 10-20 in. (25.4-50.8 cm) wide, loose panicles clustered at the tips of last year’s branches. The flowers lack petals, but have sepals that are yellow and white.
Fruit
F. simplex fruit are peculiar pods which split open into petal-like sections to reveal the small, round seeds.
Ecological Threat
Firmiana simplex is beginning to be reported more often along roadsides and other disturbed areas. This plant is self-fertile which means it only takes one tree to produce fertile seeds. The prolific seed production along with its quick growth and aggressive competition make F. simplex a candidate for EDRR - Early Detection & Rapid Response program in the warmer regions of the United States.

Selected Images from Invasive.orgView All Images at Invasive.org


Tree(s); In June
James H. Miller, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

Foliage; leaves
Nancy Loewenstein, Auburn University, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

Bark; UCDavis gardens
Karan A. Rawlins, University of Georgia, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

Flower(s); In June
James H. Miller, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

Foliage; In June
James H. Miller, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

Seedling(s); In June
James H. Miller, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

Stem(s); In Deember
James H. Miller, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

Twig(s)/Shoot(s); bud and leaf scar
James H. Miller, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org
Additional Resolutions & Image Usage

EDDMapS Distribution:
This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts and records obtained from USDA Plants Database. For more information, visit www.eddmaps.org
 


State(s) Where Reported invasive.
Based on state level agency and organization lists of invasive plants from WeedUS database.

U.S. National Parks where reported invasive:
Vicksburg National Military Park (Mississippi)



Invasive Listing Sources:
Georgia Exotic Pest Plant Council
Reichard, Sarah. 1994.  Assessing the potential of invasiveness in woody plants introduced in North America. University of Washington Ph.D. dissertation.
South Carolina Exotic Pest Plant Council
Tennessee Exotic Pest Plant Council