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Common Name:

American Smokebush or Texas Smokebush

Scientific Name:

Cotinus obovatus

Family Name:



American Smokebush is a handsome deciduous medium size shrub to small tree with a single or multiple stem trunks and an upright oval to rounded crown of blue-green foliage that develops a handsome yellow, orange, to scarlet fall color. Showy pink to purple-pink inflorescences occur in later spring to early summer.

Plant Habit or Use:

Shrub, medium shrub, large shrub, tree, small tree



Flower Color:

Showy pink to purple-pink inflorescences.

Blooming Period:

Spring, summer

Fruit Characteristics:

Small non-showy drupes.


15 ft to 20 ft (25 ft)


15 ft to 20 ft

Earth–Kind® Index:

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

Firewise Index

Explanation of the Firewise Index numerical value

USDA Hardiness Zones:

4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

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 Region H - Rio Grande Valley
Click image for enlarged map of USDA Hardiness Zones

Additional Comments:

Requires well drained soils; prone to damage from high winds and ice loads.
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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.