Belfast Botanic Gardens Tree Archive
This series of short articles about trees in the Belfast Botanic Gardens is compiled by members of the Friends group and Gardens staff. We aim to build up to a comprehensive archive of trees in Belfast Botanic Gardens. Each article illustrates a tree growing in Belfast Botanic Gardens together with information from a range of sources. Where possible we will give the tree tag number - these are the small aluminium discs, usually fixed on the tree trunk, 2 to 3m above ground level.
Decaisnea insignis (was known as D. fargesii)
Blue sausage fruit
Usually a multi-stem shrub, but can reach 5m high. The leaves are pinnate with 6 to 10 pairs of opposite leaflets. The flowers, produced in May, are yellowish green with dark green markings in long racimes up to 0.5m long. The seeds are a bean produced in blue pods. It is for these dramatic pods that the shrub is usually grown.
Decaisnea is a native of China from Sikkim to Yunnan. In some areas the plant has yellow fruit; the plant in cultivation with blue pods comes from Sichuan, Shensi and Hubei. The blue fruit form was known as Decaisnea fargesii, but this is now treated as part of the D. insignis species
For up to date nomenclature information on this and other plant species see www.theplantlist.org