Evergreen, Ground covers, Shrubs
Of the ornamental sumacs, deciduous kinds are extremely hardy to cold; they are noted for brilliant fall leaf color and, on female plants, showy clusters of (usually) red fruits that attract birds. They tend to produce suckers, especially if their roots are disturbed by cultivation. Evergreen species are less hardy. All sumac species thrive in almost any soil, as long as drainage is good (soggy soils can kill them).
Poison oak and poison ivy were once members of the genus Rhus, but they have been reclassified as Toxicodendron.Rhus integrifolia
Evergreen shrub. Native to coastal Southern California, Channel Islands, and Baja California. Generally grows 3–10 ft. tall and wide; rarely tree-like to 30 ft. Leathery dark green leaves are oval to nearly round, 1–2 1/2 in. long. White or pinkish flowers in dense clusters from midwinter to spring (sometimes from early winter into summer). Clustered small, flattish fruits are reddish and gummy, with tart pulp that can be used to flavor drinks, hence the common name.
Grows best near the coast, where established plants need no irrigation. Makes a wonderful groundcover on rocky slopes exposed to salt-laden winds; one plant eventually sprawls over a wide area, even down cliffs. In less windy places, use as a tall screen or background plant. Excellent for espalier against fences and walls. Can be trimmed to make a dense formal hedge and maintained just under a foot wide. Useful in erosion control. Highly susceptible to verticillium wilt.
Dark green leaves edged with small hooked teeth grow in rosettes to 1 ft. wide and high; suckers freel...
Native to Kashmir and Tibet. Striking, narrowly pyramidal tree, 40–60 ft. tall and 15–20 f...
Evergreen shrub, from California. Erect or sprawling to 2–3 ft. tall and 3 ft. wide. Ovate green...