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2018 Crop Louisiana
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Zanthoxylum clava-herculis

Hercules Club, Hercules'-Club, Pepperwood, Sea Ash, Southern Prickly Ash

In Stock: 0.378 lb (Total:0.378lb)
  • Zanthoxylum clava-herculis

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Buying options

0.38 lb


Germination test:
Cut (Full Seed)
Seeds per lb:
0.38 lb
Collected in:
Crop year:
Min. hardiness zone:
Item ID:

Growing Info

Scarification: Soak in hot tap water, let stand in water for 24 hours
Stratification: cold stratify for 120 days
Germination: sow seed 1/8" deep , tamp the soil, mulch the seed bed

Other: if boiling water treatment does not allow seed to imbibe, sulfuric acid treatment is required, fall sowing in mulched beds is prefered to artificial stratification 

Zanthoxylum clava-herculis, also known as the Hercules Club, Pepperwood, and Southern Prickly Ash, is a spiny tree or shrub originating in the southeastern United States. This hardy plant can grow to heights of 10-17 meters and boasts distinctive, spined, corky lumps on its bark. The leaves are glabrous and leathery, pinnately compound with 7-19 leaflets, and the flowers are dioecious with small, white petals. The tree’s fruit is a two-valved capsule that contains several small black seeds. Known as the “toothache tree,” the bark, leaves, and twigs were chewed by Native Americans and early settlers to numb the mouth, tongue, teeth, and gums to treat toothaches. The entire plant, including the roots and bark, contain aromatic bitter oil xanthoxylin, and the fruit has similar medicinal properties to the bark. Zanthoxylum clava-herculis is used in traditional medicine to help treat coughs, fevers, poor circulation, and digestive issues. It is also a popular food source for birds and is known to attract a variety of insects, including the Giant Swallowtail and Leaf Beetle. As a hardy plant that requires ample water and sunlight, the Hercules Club can sprout anywhere, including along fence rows and the edges of woods.

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