Ming Aralia: Polyscias
Ming aralias have distinctly beautiful foliage that gives them a wonderful exotic Asian appearance. They are a bit tempermental and should be kept warm and away from drafts. Unlike plants that branch sideways, the Ming aralia tends to grow only vertically. The upward reaching stalks carry compound leaves with up to seven opposite leaflets. The leaves can be deeply lobed or not. Both types of leaves may occur on the same plant. The leaves can also be variegated or plain, and again this may occur on the same plant.
As the plant ages, the lower branches may die off leaving a beautiful ashen tan, cork like trunk. This trunk is often gnarled and bumpy giving the older plants a bonsai look.
The Ming aralias aren't the easiest housplants, but they are some of the most beautiful and are well worth the effort.