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RHUS typhina 'Laciniata'

Image of Rhus typhina 'Laciniata'

Jesse Saylor

Family

Anacardiaceae

Botanical Name

RHUS typhina 'Laciniata'

Plant Common Name

Cutleaf Staghorn Sumac

General Description

Large, ferny leaves comprised of many fine, deeply cut (laciniate) leaflets are the crowning glory of this more elegant cultivar of staghorn sumac. In fall, the deep green leaves of 'Laciniata' turn eye-catching shades of flaming red. The plants are slightly less vigorous than standard sumac, which is actually a benefit.

A common eastern North American shrub or small tree, staghorn sumac produces an umbrella-like crown of feathery foliage in summer that turns radiant shades of orange, red and yellow in fall. It is fully deciduous, very hardy and tends to spread forming large colonies over time. The staghorn reference in its common name refers to its stems and leaf petioles which have a fuzzy brown surface, much like that of deer antler velvet. Wild populations are common and tend to inhabit open forests and forest margins, roadsides and disturbed sites.

During winter, staghorn sumac offers nothing but stands of bare, fuzzy, upright stems. The leaves appear in mid to late spring. Each dark green, compound leaf is long, feathery and has a distinctly fuzzy leaf rachis (central stem). The leaves are held horizontally and most dense along the upper half of the stems. In fall, they turn brilliant warm shades. In early summer tufted spikes of creamy greenish yellow flowers appears at branch tips. By early autumn, these mature into dense, upright clusters of deep red fruits which are eaten and spread by birds.

Staghorn sumac is a tough, resilient plant that grows best in locations with full to partial sun and average, well-drained soil including dry, sandy soils. Once established, it can tolerate high heat and periods of drought. Its remarkable salt tolerance also makes it a great shrub for the Oceanside. Its tendency to sucker and spread makes it an ideal native for naturalization and soil stabilization. Ornamental cultivars, like the cutleaf 'Laciniata' and Tiger Eyes™, with its fine, golden leaves, are remarkably beautiful but still have a tendency to spread, so they are best planted in large spaces.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    8 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    A1, A2, A3, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    12'-15' / 3.7m - 4.6m

  • Width

    12'-20' / 3.7m - 6.1m

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer

  • Native To

    North America, United States, Northeastern United States, Mid-Atlantic United States, Southeastern United States, North-Central United States, Central United States, South-Central United States, Canada

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Fall

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Yellow Green, Ivory

  • Fruit Color

    Red, Crimson

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Red, Orange Red

  • Foliage Color (Fall) Modifier

    Spotted/Mottled

  • Bark Color

    Red, Tan, Sandy Brown

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    Yes

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    Yes

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Coarse

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    Yes

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Mixed Border, Screening / Wind Break

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Birds

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes