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Common Name:

Staghorn Sumac

Scientific Name:

Rhus typhina

Family Name:



Staghorn Sumac is so named due to the resemblence of the pubescence covered winter stems to the horns of a stag in velvet. This rounded crown tree is one of the larger and the coarsest of the tree form sumacs. Probably the least heat tolerant of the commonly enountered tree-form sumacs. Tends to sucker and form colonies, but develops good red fall color. This taxon can be very picturesque in growth form and the flowers and fruit on female plants are quite noticeable. Less well adapted to the southern three-fourths of Texas than most sumac.

Plant Habit or Use:

Large shrub, small tree



Flower Color:

Ellow-green, mildly interesting.

Blooming Period:


Fruit Characteristics:

Showy terminal panicles of fuzzy red-brown drupes, good winter feature.


20 ft to 25 ft


20 ft to 25 ft on individuals, suckering colonies of indefinite width.

Earth–Kind® Index:

  • Heat Tolerance: Medium Heat Tolerance
  • Water Requirements: Low Water Use
  • Soil Requirements: Low Soil Requirements
  • Pest Tolerance: High Pest Resistance
  • Fertility Requirements: Low Fertility Requirements
Explanation of the Earth–Kind® Index breakdown

Firewise Index

Explanation of the Firewise Index numerical value

USDA Hardiness Zones:

3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Regions that intersect these hardiness zones:
Region A - Panhandle and High Plains Region B - North and Central Texas Region C - Northeast and East Texas Region D - West Texas Region E - Upper Rio Grande Region F - Hill Country and Central Coast Region G - Southeast Texas
Click image for enlarged map of USDA Hardiness Zones

Additional Comments:

Very cold hardy; possibilities for the Texas Panhandle and high elevation West Texas gardens.
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A Special Note about Cool Season Annuals

Cool season annuals typically are planted in the fall or early winter and flower in early spring under moderate temperatures. This group of plant materials includes: pansies, snapdragons, violas, dianthus, flowering cabbage/kale, etc. Because cool season annuals flower in the spring when conditions are mild, most have limited heat tolerance.

As a result cool season annuals do not receive a high Earth–Kind® index despite their outstanding landscape qualities.