This deciduous shrub sits quietly in the Woodland Garden, where it is showing it’s subtle yellow-green flowers.
A member of the tropical family Lardizabalaceae, Decaisnea fargesii is one of only two species of this shrubby genus, which is widely distributed in Asia, occurring from India to Myanmar. Growing to 6m in height and spread, it has erect stems and alternate pinnate leaves, with individual leaflets to 15cm in length, and borne in pairs. The campanulate flowers are produced in a slender panicle to 45cm in length, and each comprises 6 individual sepals. The plant may produce blue, cylindrical, rough fruits, which have a soft texture, and give rise to the common name dead man’s fingers. It is a relatively easy shrub in full sun or light shade, though is vulnerable to scorch by late frosts.