History/general info: Prairie Flame leaf Sumac is usually found on limestone or neutral soils, growing in the central part of Texas and in the higher mountain ranges of the Trans-Pecos. It is very heat and drought tolerant, and its leaves are vivid red in the fall. It produces berries that, when soaked in water, make a tart, tasty, high-Vitamin C tea called "sumac-ade" or "rhus-ade". The leaves were used as a replacement for oak bark in tanning.
Characteristics: Deciduous. A shrub or small tree to 20 feet tall and one or more trunks to 8" in diameter, with irregular branching that forms a loose, rounded crown of shiny green foliage. Fast growing, generally pest and disease free. Heat, cold and drought tolerant.
Flower: A tight spike of white flowers, 4" to 6" long, appears in spring at the ends of the branches. Magnificent fall color.
Planting / Care: It is generally heat, cold and drought tolerant. Full sun.
Size and Spacing: Grows to 20-30 ft high x 20 ft wide
Wildlife:Birds and Butterflies, and is larval host for Red-banded Hairstreak, Banded Hairstreak butterflies. Special value to native bees providing materials/structure.