Euonymus // is a genus of flowering plants in the staff vine family, Celastraceae. Common names vary widely among different species and between different English-speaking countries, but include spindle (or spindle tree), burning-bush, strawberry-bush, wahoo, wintercreeper, or simply euonymus. It comprises about 130 species of deciduous and evergreen shrubs, small trees and lianas. They are mostly native to East Asia, extending to the Himalayas, and they are also distributed in Europe, Australasia, North America, and Madagascar. 50 species are endemic to China.
|Euonymus europaeus foliage and fruit|
Kalonymus (Beck) Prokh.
The inconspicuous flowers occur in small groups, and can be green, yellow, pink or maroon in color depending on species. The leaves are opposite (rarely alternate) and simple ovoid, typically 2–15 cm long, and usually with a finely serrated margin. The fruit is a pink or white four- or five-valved pod-like berry, which splits open to reveal the fleshy-coated orange or red seeds.
The seeds are eaten by frugivorous birds, which digest the fleshy seed coat and disperse the seeds in their droppings. Many species are used for medicinal use, and parts of the plants can be poisonous to humans.
Cultivation and usesEdit
Euonymus are popular garden shrubs, grown for their foliage, the deciduous species often exhibiting very bright red autumnal colours, and also for the decorative berries. However, Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus or burning-bush) is considered an invasive species in the woodlands of the northeastern United States.
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- Botanica: The Illustrated A-Z of over 10000 Garden Plants and How to Cultivate Them. Könemann, 2004. pg. 358. ISBN 3-8331-1253-0
- Plants for a Future: Euonymus europaeus
- Clapham, A. R. (1975). The Oxford Book of Trees. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p.31.
- Euonymus Species List.[permanent dead link] Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 2013-07-04.
- "Euonymus". The Plant List. Retrieved 16 May 2014.
- English Names for Korean Native Plants (PDF). Pocheon: Korea National Arboretum. 2015. p. 463. ISBN 978-89-97450-98-5. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 May 2017. Retrieved 24 December 2016 – via Korea Forest Service.
- Ma, J. (1998). New species of Asian Euonymus (Celastraceae). Harvard Papers in Botany 3(2) 231-37.
Media related to Euonymus at Wikimedia Commons