The floral display of ‘Sun King’ aralia (Aralia cordata ‘Sun King’, below) is of minor consequence, though the small, satellite shaped flowers are interesting and certain to attract bees. ‘Sun King’ is most remarkable for its brightly colored yellow foliage, and its size, growing nearly to six feet tall. I notice little difference with the shrub-like perennial growing in part sun, or shaded beneath branches of a wide spreading Japanese maple, other than growth is slightly stunted in the deeper shade.
Summer, and particularly late summer, has been kind to the garden. Consistent rainfall has been most beneficial, but there are no complaints about the lack of severe heat. In the worst of summers, ‘Sun King’ will scorch with part sun exposure, but not this year. Few plants in the garden show signs typical of late summer except flowers, berries ripening on beautyberries, hollies, and dogwoods, and foliage of dogwoods has just begun to change color.