We determined the kind of seed dormancy in Schisandra arisanensis, an ANA grade ([A]mborellales [N]ymphaeales [A]ustrobaileyales) angiosperm with medicinal value. Seeds have small underdeveloped embryos, and following seed maturity their length increased approximately 360% before radicle emergence. Germination was delayed 6–8 weeks, and the percentage and rate were much higher at 15/6, 20/10 and 25/15°C than at 30/20°C. For seeds incubated at 5/5°C (8 weeks) → 15/6°C (4 weeks) → 20/10°C (8 weeks) → 25/15°C (12 weeks) → 20/10°C (5 weeks), embryos grew at 15/6°C → 20/10°C, and almost all seeds that germinated (89%) did so at 20/10°C → 25/15°C. When seeds were incubated in a complementary temperature sequence, 25/15°C (12 weeks) → 20/10°C (8 weeks) → 15/6°C (4 weeks) → 5/5°C (9 weeks) → 15/6°C (4 weeks), embryos grew at 25/15°C → 20/10°C. Nearly all seeds that germinated (93%) did so at 25/15°C → 20/10°C and at 15/6°C following 9 weeks at 5/5°C. Based on the temperature requirements for embryo growth and seed germination, seeds of this species have non-deep simple morphophysiological dormancy (C1bB).