Tetrapanax papyrifer (通草—tong cao, or Rice-paper Plant) is an evergreen shrub in the family Araliaceae, the sole species in the genus Tetrapanax. The specific epithet is frequently misspelled as "papyriferum", "papyriferus", or "papyrifera". It is endemic to Taiwan, but widely cultivated in East Asia and sometimes in other tropical regions as well. 
The species was once included in the genus Fatsia as Fatsia papyrifera.
A second species, Tetrapanax tibetanus, is now regarded as a synonym of Merrilliopanax alpinus (C.B. Clarke) C.B. Shang.
It grows to 3-7 m tall, with usually unbranched stems 2 cm diameter bearing a rosette of large leaves at the top (superficially similar to a palm crown). The leaves are carried on 40-60 cm petioles, the leaf blade orbicular, 30-50 cm across, deeply palmately lobed with 5-11 primary lobes, the central lobes larger and Y-forked near the end. It spreads extensively by sprouts from the root system underground. The inflorescence is a large panicle of hemispherical to globular umbels near the end of the stem. The flowers have 4 or 5 small white petals. The fruit is a small drupe.
Tetrapanax papyrifer at the botanical garden of Villa Durazzo-Pallavicini, Genova
- George W. Staples and Derral R. Herbst. 2005. "A Tropical Garden Flora". Bishop Museum Press: Honolulu, HI, USA.