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Toxic parts

This species can cause photosensitization of the skin[1].

Edible uses


Fruit - raw[2]. Eaten by young children[3][4]. The fruit is also used as a hop substitute when making beer and it is added to yeast to make it rise more quickly when making bread[5][6]. The fruit is produced abundantly in Britain[7], though very little of it is fertile[8]. The fruit is about 25mm long[9].


Material uses

Wood - hard, heavy, close grained[10][11]. It weighs 43lb per cubic foot[12].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

The root-bark is anthelmintic, antibacterial, antiperiodic, stomachic and tonic[13][14][15][10][16]. It has been mixed with other medicines in order to give added potency[17][18]. It has a soothing influence on the mucous membranes and promotes the appetite, being tolerated when other tonics cannot be retained[13]. It is also taken in the treatment of intermittent fevers such as malaria, heartburn, roundworms, pinworms and poor digestion[16]. Externally it is applied to wounds[16]. The roots are harvested in the autumn, the bark peeled off and dried for later use[16].

The roots are a tonic, used in the treatment of asthmatic breathing, fevers, poor appetite etc[18].

The leaves are said to be useful in the treatment of wounds and also in the destruction of intestinal worms[17][18].


Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.


Nothing listed.


Nothing listed.


Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame[9]. Stored seed requires 3 months cold stratification at 5°c and should be sown as early as possible in the year[19]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the cold frame for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Very little of the seed produced in Britain is viable[8].

Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame[19].


Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Ptelea trifoliata mollis. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.


Succeeds in any fertile well-drained moisture retentive soil in full sun or light part day shade[8][9].

The young growth in spring can be damaged by late frosts. A very ornamental plant[20]. This sub-species is the form that is eaten by children[3].

Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[9].


Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Ptelea trifoliata mollis. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Ptelea trifoliata mollis.




None listed.


None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Binomial name
Ptelea trifoliata mollis
Imported References
Material uses & Functions
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Hardiness Zone
Heat Zone
full sun
light shade
Soil PH
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
    Native Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Adapted Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Native Geographical Range
    None listed.
    Native Environment
    None listed.
    Ecosystem Niche
    None listed.
    Root Zone Tendancy
    None listed.
    Deciduous or Evergreen
    Herbaceous or Woody
    Life Cycle
    Growth Rate
    Mature Size
    6 x meters
    Flower Colour
    Flower Type


    1. ? Diggs, Jnr. G.M.; Lipscomb. B. L. & O'Kennon. R. J [Illustrated Flora of North Central Texas] Botanical Research Institute, Texas. (1999-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.1 Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-20459-6 (1972-00-00)
    3. ? Yanovsky. E. Food Plants of the N. American Indians. Publication no. 237. U.S. Depf of Agriculture. ()
    4. ? 4.04.1 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
    5. ? 5.05.1 McPherson. A. and S. Wild Food Plants of Indiana. Indiana University Press ISBN 0-253-28925-4 (1977-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.1 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
    7. ? 7.07.1 Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable ISBN 0094579202 (1974-00-00)
    8. ? Bean. W. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement. Murray (1981-00-00)
    9. ? Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    10. ? Sargent. C. S. Manual of the Trees of N. America. Dover Publications Inc. New York. ISBN 0-486-20278-X (1965-00-00)
    11. ? 11.011.1 Vines. R. A. Trees of Central Texas. University of Texas Press ISBN 0-292-78958-3 (1987-00-00)
    12. ? 12.012.1 Britton. N. L. Brown. A. An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada Dover Publications. New York. ISBN 0-486-22642-5 (1970-00-00)
    13. ? Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
    14. ? 14.014.1 Lust. J. The Herb Book. Bantam books ISBN 0-553-23827-2 (1983-00-00)
    15. ? 15.015.1 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (1959-00-00)
    16. ? Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
    17. ? Weiner. M. A. Earth Medicine, Earth Food. Ballantine Books ISBN 0-449-90589-6 (1980-00-00)
    18. ? Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. ISBN 0395467225 (1990-00-00)
    19. ? 19.019.1 Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W. The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation. Athens Ga. Varsity Press ISBN 0942375009 (1987-00-00)
    20. ? ? Flora Europaea Cambridge University Press (1964-00-00)
    21. ? Fernald. M. L. Gray's Manual of Botany. American Book Co. (1950-00-00)