Chinese Tallow-treesapium sebiferum
|Leaves and buds|
Triadica sebifera (syn. Sapium sebiferum), the Chinese tallow,Chinese tallowtree, Florida aspen, chicken tree, gray popcorn tree, or candleberry tree, is a tree native to eastern Asia. It is native to eastern China, and Taiwan, and introduced to Japan in Edo period. The waxy coating of the seeds is used for candle and soap making, and the leaves are used as herbal medicine to treat boils. The plant sap and leaves are reputed to be toxic, and decaying leaves from the plant are toxic to other species of plants. The specific epithets sebifera and sebiferum mean "wax-bearing" and refer to the tallow that coats the seeds.
It is useful in the production of biodiesel because it is the third most productive vegetable oil producing crop in the world, after algae and oil palm. This species is documented as a noxious invader in the southern U.S.