|Symplocos paniculata is a large shrub or small tree. The bark on mature specimens has gray ridges and dark fissures. Growth habit is spreading, and low branching. Foliage is dark green, with no real fall color. Fragrant, cream-white flowers, 1/2 inch wide, are borne on 2 to 3 inch panicles in early spring, on last year's wood. Fruit is a bright turquoise or sapphire blue, 1/3 inch wide drupe, ripening in fall, devoured by birds. To insure cross pollination, several shrubs should be planted. Winter pruned, not fussy as long as the soil is well drained. Not bothered by pests. An exellent plant for the back of the border, as a screen or small tree. Native to China, Japan, Himalayas.