Akebia quinata

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Akebia quinata
Akebia quinata02.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Order: Ranunculales
Family: Lardizabalaceae
Genus: Akebia
A. quinata
Binomial name
Akebia quinata

Rajania quinata Houtt.

Akebia quinata, commonly known as chocolate vine, five-leaf chocolate vine,[1] or five-leaf akebia, is a shrub that is native to Japan, China and Korea, and invasive in the eastern United States from Georgia to Michigan to Massachusetts.[2][3][4] In its native habitat, it is often found on hills, in hedges, on trees, along forest edges and streams, and on mountainous slopes.[5]


Akebia quinata is a climbing evergreen shrub that grows to 10 m (30 ft) or more in height and has palmately compound leaves with five elliptic or obovate leaflets that are notched at the tip.[6] The woody stems are greyish-brown with lenticels.[5] The flowers are clustered in racemes and are chocolate-scented, with three or four sepals. The fruits are sausage-shaped pods which contain edible pulp.[2][7] The gelatinous placentation contains seeds surrounded with white pulp, that has a sweet flavor.[citation needed]


The fruit contains a sweet soft pulp resembling a white dragonfruit, eaten primarily in Japan as a seasonal delicacy. The rind, with a slight bitter taste, is used as vegetable, e.g., stuffed with ground meat and deep-fried. The vines are traditionally used for basket-weaving.[8]

The stem contains approximately 30% potassium salts thus causing a diuretic action.[9][unreliable medical source?]

The fruit is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to treat urinary tract infections, scanty lactation, and rheumatoid arthritis.


Akebia prefers sandy soils with good drainage, and regular watering, though it is drought-resistant.[10] In some areas the plant is an invasive species to be avoided.[11][12] This species in considered hardy in all of the UK and Europe (down to -15 to -20°C).[6] In the US, it suitable for hardiness zones 4–9.[13]


Akebia comes from the Japanese vernacular name, 'akebi' (アケビ).[14]

Quinata means 'divided into five', and is presumably a reference to its lobed leaves.[14]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ English Names for Korean Native Plants (PDF). Pocheon: Korea National Arboretum. 2015. p. 345. ISBN 978-89-97450-98-5. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 May 2017. Retrieved 25 January 2016 – via Korea Forest Service.
  2. ^ a b Levy-Yamamori, Ran; Ran Levy; Gerard Taaffe (2004). Garden Plants of Japan. Timber Press. ISBN 0-88192-650-7. Retrieved 2009-04-05.
  3. ^ "Akebia quinata". Flora of China. Retrieved 2009-04-05.
  4. ^ "Flora of North America vol 3". Efloras.org. Retrieved 2018-05-31.
  5. ^ a b Thompson, John Peter (November 22, 2019). "Akebia quinata (five-leaf akebia)". CABI Invasive Species Compendium. Archived from the original on 2017-07-25. Retrieved April 21, 2021.
  6. ^ a b "Akebia quinata | chocolate vine/RHS Gardening". www.rhs.org.uk. Retrieved 2021-04-21.
  7. ^ "Decaisne, Joseph. Archives du Muséum d'Histoire Naturelle 1: 195, pl. 13a. 1839". Biodiversitylibrary.org. 2013-05-30. Retrieved 2018-05-31.
  8. ^ taken from ja:アケビ (2011.11.3(Thu) 12:08)
  9. ^ Reid, Daniel (2001), "A Handbook of Chinese Healing Herbs", Tuttle Publishing, ISBN 962-593-988-1. Retrieved on 2009-05-20.
  10. ^ "Akebia quinata (Chocolate Vine)".
  11. ^ "PlantFiles: Akebia Species, Chocolate Vine, Five-Leaf Akebia, Raisin Vine".
  12. ^ "Chocolate-Scented Flowers Make Akebia Vine Unique".
  13. ^ "Five Leaf Akebia Info". www.gardeningknowhow.com. Archived from the original on 2013-03-28. Retrieved 2021-04-21.
  14. ^ a b Gledhill, David (2008). "The Names of Plants". Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521866453 (hardback), ISBN 9780521685535 (paperback). pp 40, 324

External links[edit]