How Neon Are The Sumacs?

As kids, we used to rate the fall colour by how ‘neon’ the sumacs were that year – had they turned gleaming tangerine, shocking orange, or was it vibrant cherry?  And in a well rated year, we would have a spectacular mix of all three!  Sumacs have opposing leaves on sculptural branches, with a frond-like, lush green, tropical aura through spring and summer.  They also bear fuzzy, burgundy fruit bundles in upright clumps come September, but are refuted for their captivating fall colour.  Sumacs are not for a small garden.  They are a suckering shrub (new shrubs shoot up from roots of the original shrub) with a vigorous spreading habit.  In a cottage, country or larger property this can be of benefit if you are looking for a colony of large shrubs, with multi season interest.  This year I would rate the sumacs at a 9 out of 10 by the way - where I live, the fall colour is now at its magnificent peak, with a hearty contribution from the sumacs! Technical stuff – Sumac, large deciduous shrub hardy to Zone 2, height and spread of 10’-20’+, prefers well drained, average soil and full sun (will tolerate part sun but lesser fall colour), aggressive spreader.


Posted on October 17, 2014 and filed under Shrubs.