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Smooth Sumac

Scientific name

Rhus glabra


Smooth Sumac is a deciduous shrub species that typically grows between 3 and 5 m in height. The leaves are large, dark green colored, pinnately compound, with 9-27 leaflets. The flowers are small, yellowish green colored, and bloom between June and July. The fruits are showy, erect, hairy, orange to reddish brown colored, grow in large pyramidal clusters, only appear on female plants, and persist throughout the winter. The fruit and habitat this shrub provides are beneficial to wildlife species, such as birds and small mammals. It is hardy, easy to grow, and low maintenance. The roots are good for controlling erosion and stabilizing shorelines. Similar to Staghorn Sumac, this shrub grows aggressively and is valuable for filling in un-vegetated areas.

Planting conditions

Smooth Sumac grows best in dry to normal conditions with full or partial sun exposure. It prefers well-drained areas and is tolerant to a variety of soil types. It is a very hardy plant and is tolerant to drought, steep slopes, disturbed soil, nutrient poor soil, and shallow soil. This shrub can be naturally found on open rocky slopes, dry fields, and roadside ditches.


  • Plant height:
    • Any
    • Over 3m
  • Moisture level:
    • Dry
    • Normal
    • Drought Tolerant
  • Light conditions:
    • Full sun
    • Partial sun
  • Soil type:
    • Sandy
    • Loamy
    • Rocky
  • pH:
    • Acidic
    • Basic
    • Normal
  • Depth:
    • Potted
    • Bareroot
  • Eco Zone:
    • 3b
    • 4a
    • 4b
    • 5a
    • 5b
    • 6a
    • 7a
  • Plant type:
    • Shrub
  • Height:
    • 3-5 m
  • Spread:
    • 3 m