Rhus verniciflua (Varnish Tree)
Also known as: Chinese Lacquer Tree, Japan Lacquer, Japanese Lacquer Tree
Native: Himalaya and China
Location: Cultivated in other parts of east Asia and sometimes in Europe.
A poisonous juice is extracted from the stem to make the black varnish used in making black lacquer in China and Japan, and an oil from the fruits was used for candle-making in China.
Leaves are 30-60cm long with 7-13 shortly stalked leaflets which are softly downy underneath.
Flowers open in July in large open clusters up to 25cm long.
Fruits are 0.6cm across, ripening yellowish brown.