(Aralia spinosa)
The Ginseng Family (Araliaceae)

Large, upright, suckering, deciduous shrub 10-15’ tall, or a small, flat topped tree up to 35’ tall, with stout, sharp spines found on its leaf stalks, stems and branches. Typically naked at the bottom, but crowned at the top by umbrella-like canopies of huge compound leaves.


Edge of rich wooded areas; alluvial soils.

Interesting Facts: 

Native Americans and early settlers utilized the plant for treatment of boils, rheumatism and toothaches. Poisonous if large amounts of berries are eaten and root can cause contact dermatitis. Largest leaf of any North American tree.

Black, egg-shaped and approximately .25” in size; usually in large clusters on reddish stems.
White, fragrant, appearing above the leaves in large clusters.
Wildlife value: 
Flowers attract bees, butterflies and other nectar seeking insects. Birds and small mammals eat seed. Deer browse leaves.
Leaf type: 
Wildlife value: 
Tree dimensions: 

Leaf length: 15.00-48.00 inches
Tree height: 10.00-35.00 feet

Where to find Devil’s Walkingstick on the Louisiana State Arboretum Trails:

WAB - Walker Branch Trail 13.0

BBR - Backbone Ridge Trail 8.0

Refer to our Live Map to locate this species and its interpretative signage on the trail system.