Sumac (Rhus copallinum & Rhus typhina)

  • Two New York native species are Rhus copallinum & Rhus typhina. They look very similar except Rhus typhina grows taller.

  • The sumac is a large, deciduous shrub or small tree, 15-30 ft. tall, with short, crooked trunks and open branching.

  • Glossy, dark-green, pinnately compound leaves turn reddish-purple in the fall.

  • Yellowish-green flowers are succeeded by drooping, pubescent, pyramidal fruit clusters which turn dull red and persist through winter.

  • It is easily distinguishable from other sumacs by the winged leaf axis and watery sap. 

  • Rhus typhina (commonly known as stag-horn sumac) is a 25-35 ft., colony-forming, deciduous shrub with crooked, leaning trunks, picturesque branches and velvety twigs.

  • Large, bright-green, pinnately-compound leaves become extremely colorful in early fall.

  • Staghorn Sumac reaches tree size more often than related species and commonly forms thickets. 

  • In winter, the bare, widely forking, stout, hairy twigs resemble deer antlers in velvet.

  •  Native to eastern North America.