Tree of Heaven Ailanthus altissima (P. Miller) SwingleNon-native  -  Invasive    Synonyms: Ailanthus glandulosa, Chinese Sumac, Ghetto Palm, Stinking Sumac, Tree of Hell, Varnish Tree.
Kingdom Plantae   >   Division Tracheophyta   >   Class Magnoliopsida   >   Order Sapindales   >   Family Simaroubaceae   >   Genus Ailanthus   

Status:

Abundant and highly invasive species, introduced into the United States in the 1700s; it is now found throughout the state along roadsides and in disturbed areas.

"Introduced and naturalized from Asia; Massachusetts to southern Ontaria and Iowa, and southward" (Reed, 1964). Mechanical and chemical methods of control are expensive and not very effective.

Description:

Tree of Heaven is readily recognizable in winter by the membranous, twisted fruits, or samaras.

Where to find:

Easily found in empty lots and along roadsides.

Relationships:

A primary larval host plant of the Ailanthus Webworm Moth.

There are 332 records in the project database.

View species at Maryland Plant Atlas

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Tree of Heaven in Kent Co., Maryland (6/7/2014). Photo by Jim Stasz. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (6/18/2011). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven at Fort Smallwood Park, Maryland (8/12/2012). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Montgomery Co., Maryland (7/14/2014). Photo by Elizabeth Miller. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (6/25/2018). Photo by Matthew Beziat. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (6/18/2011). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Calvert Co., Maryland (6/8/2017). Photo by Tyler Bell. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Harford Co., Maryland (8/13/2017). Photo by Dave Webb. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Howard Co., Maryland (6/22/2013). Photo by Nancy Magnusson. (MBP list)

Close-up of Tree of Heaven in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (6/18/2011). Photo by Bill Harms. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (8/15/2017). Photo by Wayne Longbottom. (MBP list)

The seedlings of Tree of Heaven showing the invasive root suckering in Carroll Co., Maryland (5/19/2019). Photo by Barbara Speckart. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Washington Co., Maryland (7/22/2013). Photo by Jim Stasz. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Allegany Co., Maryland (7/4/2014). Photo by Kimberly Booth. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven fruits in winter in Montgomery Co., Maryland (2/16/2015). Photo by Jane Hill. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven battling Japanese Honeysuckle at Eastern Neck NWR in Kent Co., Maryland (4/16/2016). Photo by Nancy Martin. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven growing in Kent Co., Maryland (5/2/2016). Photo by Dan Small. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Harford Co., Maryland (12/6/2015). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

A Tree of Heaven sapling in winter in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland (3/13/2013). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven growing in Baltimore Co., Maryland (3/18/2018). Photo by Sue Muller. (MBP list)

The trunk of a large Tree of Heaven at Terrapin Nature Park, Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (11/23/2013). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

The trunk of a fairly young Tree of Heaven at Terrapin Nature Park, Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (11/23/2013). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in Washington Co., Maryland (4/8/2017). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven in late fall at Terrapin Nature Park, Queen Anne's Co., Maryland (11/23/2013). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

A very large Tree of Heaven in Calvert Co., Maryland (7/10/2016). Photo by Bill Hubick. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven growing in Baltimore Co., Maryland (11/27/2017). Photo by Sue Muller. (MBP list)

Tree of Heaven growing in Frederick Co., Maryland (6/7/2017). Photo by Mark Etheridge. (MBP list)


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