A deciduous shrub or small tree found as a garden escape or throw-out on roadsides, railway banks and, less frequently, on waste ground and rubbish tips; it also occurs as a relic of cultivation. It can become naturalised, reproducing vigorously by suckers, but seed-set is very poor as the species is dioecious and most populations consist of a single sex. Lowland.
This species was cultivated in Britain by 1629, and is extremely popular in gardens. Many records are questionably wild, and it was not recorded as naturalised until 1966 (Berks.). The vast majority of records are recent, probably reflecting the increased interest in recording aliens rather than a genuine increase in its distribution.
Native of eastern N. America.
PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.