The parent of this plant was collected by Bleddyn Wynn-Jones from the banks of a river in the Shei-Pa area of the Central Mountains in Taiwan. I collected mine from Wynn-Jones’ nursery in a mountainous region of North Wales, after a slightly less arduous journey, although it didn’t feel so at the time. It is known as Tetrapanax papyrifer Rex. Its value as an architectural plant is shown by the fact that now, on the cusp of winter, when all the deciduous trees have shed their leaves, it’s still looking in tip-top condition. As the winter goes on the leaves will be gradually shed, but it’s going to stay looking good until well after Christmas. A prolonged cold spell will kill it – but not quite, because the root system underground will stay alive, and in the spring a mass of new shoots will emerge to replace the old plant. It’s a tenacious beast and I think that if it was left to its own devices it would, eventually, take over the entire garden.