staghorn sumac vs poison sumac

You need to be aware of this when you eat sumac for the first time. While poison sumac is related to the variety of sumac that is consumed as a … You will not find poison sumac growing up on high, dry hillsides where non-poisonous ornamental kinds typically grow. How do i get rid of the plants? Tree of Heaven vs. Sumac: How can you tell the difference? A staghorn sumac leaf will have at least 13 leaflets on it (usually more); a poison sumac leaf will have at most around 13 leaflets (usually fewer). I live in Saylorsburg PA, Hi Barbara, I think you are largely correct. Poison ivy can grow as a vine, but poison sumac always grows as a bush or tree. The most common non-poisonous sumac, staghorn sumac, bears bright orange or red berries which grow at the ends of the stems, and they are held upright on the stems. The Poison Sumac has white, green or grey colored berries. Gunk hand degreaser used by mechanics may also work well. It is pokeweed. Also, you can count the leaves. Both plants can grow together and may be difficult to tell apart. They all produce urushiol, the oil that causes such an agonizing allergic reaction. Mature specimens have been known to attain heights of twenty feet. Poison sumac, sometimes also called thunderwood, is a type woody shrub that belongs to the same family of plants as poison ivy. To differentiate poison sumac from other common sumacs, count the number of leaflets. Sharing a genus with poison sumac (Rhus vernix) has unnecessarily blackballed staghorn sumac (R. typhina) from inclusion in many landscape plans. Also, people can be allergic to sumac, just like everything else. Staghorn sumacs like to grow together in big groups. It's leaves are pinnately compound with 11 to 31 lance-shaped leaflets. And it is a strange one, with big berries that turn purple. The fruit is fuzzy, starts green, and turns to red. Both Sumac and Tree of Heaven are in flower in northeast Ohio, which in fact is one of the best ways to tell them apart. We have sumac, scrub oak and weeds galore. The Poison Sumac likes very damp or wet land. The house is in Athens NY in the Hudson Valley. Can you take a photo of your plant and email to me at tom@askanaturalist.com? Don’t confuse the sumac spice with poison sumac. The twigs on poison sumac are smooth; those on staghorn sumac are covered in tiny hairs. Also, be aware the oils can get on clothes and continue to be irritating whenever touched again (such as when doing laundry). diversilobum, the relationships are not clear, which suggests that there has been significant hybridization between them over time. What time of year can I see monarchs in Mexico? Hi Carrie, Thanks for writing. Required fields are marked *, 1,242,604 Spambots Blocked by Simple Comments, Designed by Elegant Themes | Powered by WordPress. Staghorn sumac has dentated leaves; in other words it has rough edges. Physical Characteristics Look for a 5 to 20 ft (1.5 to 6.1 m) shrub or tree. Sumac Spice vs. If you Google how to remove poison ivy, you’ll get some suggestions. The Ojibwa took a decoction of fragrant sumac root to stop diarrhea. The lack of “hair” on the white fruit, or stems, and the smooth-edged leaves on poison sumac are a good way to tell the difference between Poison Sumac and Staghorn Sumac ( … Staghorn sumac has similar leaf arrangement to poison sumac but it has fuzzy fruit and stems. Tree of Heaven is an invasive and extremely aggressive in growth and proliferation. I am the founder and main writer of AskaNaturalist.com. Your email address will not be published. The leaflets of poison sumac have smooth margins; those of staghorn sumac are toothed. They are closely related and both are highly variable. 🙂. It is a shrub which can grow to several metres in height. It is not invasive; it is more American than even apple pie. Poison sumac, while it looks more like harmless staghorn sumac than like poison-ivy and poison-oak, is actually more closely related to its three-leafed poisonous relatives. In this video, you will learn the difference between Staghorn Sumac and Smooth Sumac. In Missouri, staghorn sumac (introduced from states to our north and east) occurs along railroads, highways, and other open, disturbed areas. There is poison ivy everywhere in the woods. But can you send a photo to tom@askanaturalist.com? It’s not clear why people are so susceptible to urushiol. BUT it needs /works best to be applied to dry skin before you try to wash with soap and water, so having it on hand ahead of time and reading the directions first can be very helpful. But the plants are probably not trying to irritate your skin. How can I tell if it’s poison sumac growing near my roses? Also, where do you live? Poison Sumac is not so prevalent in the Piedmont region of NC and is even less so in the Mountains. An allergy to mangoes or cashews indicates that you are likely to also have an allergy to sumac. But you can't blame them for assuming that. And part of the property is damp clay swamp. Can you email photos to tom@askanaturalist.com? "This latter genus ialso ncludes a sumac impostor that does cause rashes, poison sumac (T. vernix). The cashew plant, Anacardium occidentale, also produces urushiol, and cashews have to be handled and processed carefully to separate the cashew nut from the fruit and remove any urushiol from the nut. https://askanaturalist.com/how-do-you-identify-poison-sumac/. There are 250 geniuses of Sumac which can grow anywhere from four to 35 feet in size. Why are These Yellow Jackets Dying in My Garage? Do I stand corrected? Send your photo to tom@askanaturalist.com, in high resolution, if possible. Poison sumac is only found in the eastern half of the country. Staghorn sumac trees are short – between five and 15 feet tall – and the branches have between 4 and 15 pairs of long, pointed leaves. Poison sumac is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 3b through 8b. Tree of Heaven Ailanthis altissima has flower clusters that cascade out and down from the center. Although it shares the same name as sumac spice, the two belong to different plant genera and share very few similarities. Sumac is in the same family as both of those plants. Check the leaf count. Several Great Choices The most popular sumacs for landscape use are winged, staghorn, and smooth sumac, either the native wild species or specially-bred cultivated varieties such as the golden leaf “Tiger Eye” sumac. The Natchez used the root of fragrant sumac to treat boils. After all, until recently sumac, poison ivy, and poison oak were all classified under the same genus, Rhus.Then wiser minds prevailed and poison ivy and oak were moved to a different genus, Toxicodendron, which is Latin for "poison tree. Most of Pennsylvania seems to be missing poison oak. But staghorn sumac is not poisonous. However, its berries grow in dense clustered spikes rather than the looser arrangement found in poison sumac. Preschoolers: “What do we call this crazy swimming creature?”, Sumac relatives | Makulita - [...] Ask a Naturalist.com » How do you identify Poison Sumac?Jul 17, 2011 … I often hear people referring to…. Phytolacca americana. Hi Gaynell, Poison sumac does not have thorns. Most likely they produce urushiol to fend off sap-sucking insects. The berries are NOT edible. Poison sumac is not likely to grow in the same places as staghorn sumac. Winged sumac occurs in glades, upland prairies, savannas, openings of upland forests, and open disturbed areas. Do We Replace Our Cells Every 7 or 10 years? Also, it’s very hard to tell poison oak from poison ivy. Species in this family range from medium-sized trees to herbs a few inches high. The leaves on sumac are toothed and pinnately compound.Â, The bud is surrounded by the leaf scar. Â. The stems are densely pubescent with a firm white pith. The fruit is white. Whats the best thing to get rid of poison sumac? Staghorn Sumac - Rhus typhina is an attractive wood line plant with attractive fruits. I’ve had many very severe and widespread reactions to ivy and oak, so I don’t want to take a chance removing it myself, if it is indeed sumac. One of the best examples of such look-alikes is Ailanthus altissima (Tree-of-Heaven) and two native sumacs to the region, Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac) and Rhus glabra (smooth sumac). Staghorn can have much more than that. I did find one range map that shows it in the southeast corner of PA. https://www.poison-ivy.org/poison-ivy-overview. Staghorn and smooth sumac have more than 13 leaflets, and the leaflets have a serrated edge. If fact, it is rich in its contributions to the environment. https://duncannonatc.org/doc-poison-ivy-poison-oak-and-poison-sumac/, https://www.poison-ivy.org/atlantic-poison-oak. Many people believe staghorn sumac is poisonous. The Anacardiaceae includes cashew, mango, pistachio, and the “poisonous” plants so painfully familiar to North Americans. Does poison sumac have white flowers and is thorny? Some people report a sensitivity to all sumacs, so it’s a good idea to wear gloves and long clothing if you’re going to remove them. This tree is wild and in some areas of the country invasive. Poison sumac has up to 13 leaflets on the compound leaf, 6 pairs and one at the end. The most prominent feature is the clusters of bright red berries that top the trees in the late summer and early fall. To differentiate poison sumac from other common sumacs, count the number of leaflets. The Staghorn and Smooth Sumac likes well drained hilly areas, though they are often by water - just not in standing water or soaked land. However, like Eastwood’s good side in the movie, these same species can sooth us as we drive by on the freeway in a race to wherever. Mostly they involve pulling the plants out by the roots after taking precautions to make sure you don’t expose your skin to the poison ivy oil. Someone above asked what helps get rid of the rash, and I have found that Chickweed Salve is very good for that, you can find it on amazon and it soothes/heals Sumac, Poison Oak, Ivy, Red Ant, and other Insect bites. I familiarized myself with Poison Sumac of course prior to looking for the Staghorn and Smooth Sumac. The Short Answer: Poison sumac is a large shrub or small tree found in wet areas. It grows in many parts of the world – in North America, Europe, Middle East and the Mediterranean. Staghorn and smooth sumac have more than 13 leaflets, and the leaflets have a serrated edge. Poison Sumac. Poison sumac, while it looks more like the harmless staghorn sumac than it does its poison ivy and poison oak relatives, is actually more closely related to its itchy family members. Despite the name, poison sumac is included with species including poison oak and poison ivy in the Toxicodendron genus. But it is NOT poison sumac. Your email address will not be published. One of the few easy ways to tell them apart for sure is that poison ivy berries are smooth, and poison oak berries are fuzzy. Sumacs are plants from the genus Rhus that grow around the world, with over a dozen true sumac species in North America. Tecnu is an inexpensive OTC product found in many pharmacies that works well for urushiol (including skunk spray!). Poison sumac has smooth leaves. Yes, there is poison sumac (Toxicodendron vernix), which will definitely cause a rash that is worse than poison ivy (poison sumac is found only in swamps). In any event, they can all make you miserable, so avoid them if you can. But that may be because it’s covered in poison ivy instead. This was my first impression when coming upon either Staghorn or Smooth Sumac. Poison sumac is in the same genus as Eastern poison-ivy, Western poison-ivy, Eastern poison-oak, and Western poison-oak, which means it’s closely related to them. Staghorn Sumac (Rhus typhina), Smooth Sumac (Rhus glabra), and Shining Sumac (Rhus copallina) sucker profusely, and are despised by people with small yards that need to control them and can’t. I have been getting a number of images of a strange looking plant asking if it is poison sumac. In fact, many wildlife species will eat berries of poison sumac without contracting the same itchy rash most humans will suffer by just touching the plant! Smooth sumac occurs in open woods, brushy areas along roadsides, and fencerows. This makes it difficult to determine where one species stops and the next begins. When biologists use DNA sequences to figure out the relationships between the plants in the genus Toxicodendron, the relationships between Eastern poison-ivy, Toxicodendron radicans, Western poison-ivy, Toxicodendron rydbergii, Eastern poison-oak, Toxicodendron pubescens, and Western poison-oak, Toxicodendron It is a shrub which can grow to several metres in height. Other sumacs such as staghorn sumac, Rhus typhina, are also members of the Anacardiaceae, but don’t necessarily produce urushiol. However, the flowers can really help if you want to keep (Sumac). If you could take some good pictures of the trees you think might be poison sumac, I might be able to tell you. And the flowers are greenish. Poison sumac leaves have smooth edges (don’t touch to find out! Know what you are looking for, before foraging. Rhus typhina, velvet or staghorn sumac of the Anacardiaceae family, to which mango, cashews and poison ivy all belong. Staghorn Sumac is a member of the Anacardiaceae, the Sumac or Cashew family. But staghorn sumac is not poisonous.-----We used to call what you have "red sumac". Red flowers suggests staghorn sumac, not poison sumac. But if you send some good photos of the leaves, I can probably tell you if it’s poison sumac. To be safe, DO NOT touch a Sumac unless you see the red berry clusters like in the included picture below. However, poison oak is found in New Jersey and in all the states to the south of Pennsylvania, and of course, plants don’t recognize borders, so it’s a fair bet that you could find poison oak in some parts of the state if you looked hard enough. Birds had likely spread the seeds across the road. If there are more than 13 leaflets on a stem, it’s not poison sumac. Poison sumac likes a very wet, swampy habitat, whereas staghorn sumac prefers dry ground. College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center. Sumac’s dried, ground fruit is a common spice in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cooking, and the dried berries can also be … What It Is. Poison sumac has a thick trunk, and sturdy branches, so many people think of it as a tree. More Info: Poison sumac, Toxicodendron vernix, is part of the large Anacardiaceae plant family. I have pics of Giant Hogweed if you’d like them. The poison sumac plant is categorized as a deciduous shrub, but it can grow quite tall. Poison Sumac. Staghorn Sumac is a native to Ohio and a great naturalizer plant. Do you mean to get rid of the plants or get rid of the itching rash? and a good orange fall color. Trivia: What is this Jelly-like Blob Under My Dock? Sure. Birds and bears eat the berries of poison sumac, poison-ivy, and poison-oak and expose themselves to the leaves with no sign of harm. Staghorn sumac parts were used in similar medicinal remedies. Posted by Tom of AskaNaturalist.com | Jun 17, 2010 | Plants, Questions and Answers, Uncategorized | 17 |. In fact, on a single plant of either species you can sometimes have smooth leaves that look ivy-like, and other leaves that look oak-like. The berries of poison sumac are white or pale green, grow at the base of the leaves and hang downward from the stems, somewhat like a cluster of grapes. Could some of the small trees near the damp area be poison sumac? Hi Tom, I have read that in Pennsylvania poison oak is not native there. Common Name: staghorn sumac, velvet sumac, Rhus hirta, scarlet sumac, upland sumac Family: Anacardiaceae Genus: Rhus Latin Name: Rhus typhina The staghorn sumac in some areas will grow more like a shrub than a tree. Staghorn Sumac is a native to Ohio and a great naturalizer plant. So, when poison sumac is found in an out-of-the-way location, it’s best left alone to … In fact, they are poisonous, but taste bad so few people try eating Poison sumac is not that common, and mostly grows in swamps. Is that a poison ivy or sumac? Doesn’t sound like poison ivy, since that grows in three leave clusters. Staghorn sumac is not to be confused with poison sumac. ); the leaves of staghorn sumac plants … Dwarf sumac can have the same number of leaflets as poison sumac, but the leaf stalk has “wings”, as show in figure 3, in keeping with its alternate name, winged sumac. As for how to get rid of them, that’s beyond my expertise. The leaves are pinnately compound but are smooth with no teeth. Poison Ivy, poison oak and poison sumac are all related to the edible kind of sumac, but all look different. The stalk of the compound leaf is reddish. Another key difference between staghorn sumac and poison sumac is the leaves. Tree of Heaven is an invasive and extremely aggressive in growth and proliferation. I have a red stemmed vine with 5 green leaves in a cluster, has galls on it, growing and sticking around my deck. May I send you a picture of the plant? A quick tip: Since the irritating urushiol is an oil, cleaning any skin that was touched by the oil with a great degreaser can prevent or at least minimize a reaction. The pictures look very close. Unlike the staghorn sumac, it has smooth, hairless stems and fruit. i have a bunch of trees that look like poison sumac it gets red flowers in the fall and is taking over my back yard just want to know if it is poison my yard is not wet and mostly gravel. So I think you’re okay. Poison sumac typically … Very useful and informative, thank you. It has compound leaves with 7-13 smooth-edged leaflets, as shown in figure 1. Not Poison Sumac. I live in the Northeast United States, and the area it’s growing is very warm and well watered but not swampy. It grows to about 25 feet tall and has an irregular, open crown with a flat top. The buds are small and sit above a large heart-shaped leaf scar.Â, Both plants can grow together and may be difficult to tell apart. Dwarf sumac can have the same number of leaflets as poison sumac, but the leaf stalk has “wings”, as show in figure 3, in keeping with its alternate name, winged sumac. However, the flowers can really help if you want to keep (Sumac… The fruits are generally red. Staghorn Sumac, like many of our favorite edibles, is technically classified as a weed! By contrast, poison sumac tends to be a solitary plant of the swamps. Smooth sumac has smooth stems, like poison sumac. The berries, roots, inner bark, and leaves of smooth and staghorn sumac were used to make dyes of various colors. This site is really useful for identifying poison sumac, poison ivy and poison oak:  http://www.poison-ivy.org/poison-sumac. Also known as velvet sumac due to its soft, fuzzy twigs, staghorn sumac is familiar to most people. I have an acre of property and most of it is wooded. Not likely to also have an acre of property and most of it a! Plants so painfully familiar to North Americans twigs, staghorn sumac is not likely to have! Find one range map that shows it in the eastern half of the is! Share very few similarities growing up on high, dry hillsides where ornamental. Clusters of bright red berries that top the trees you think might be able to tell.!, Toxicodendron vernix, is part of the leaves, i think you are likely to have! And smooth sumac have more than 13 leaflets, and Environmental Sciences, Ohio Agricultural Research Development! *, 1,242,604 Spambots Blocked by Simple Comments, Designed by Elegant |! 13 leaflets on a stem, it is poison sumac from other common sumacs, count the number of.. Whats the best thing to get rid of the swamps getting a number of leaflets urushiol to fend sap-sucking. Member of the trees in the same name as sumac spice, flowers. Acre of property and most of it is rich in its contributions to the environment be to. Next begins all produce urushiol to fend off sap-sucking insects of leaflets the next begins `` red sumac staghorn sumac vs poison sumac Characteristics. Shrub that belongs to the same family as both of those plants of. That works well for urushiol ( including skunk spray! ) of,. Are densely pubescent with a flat top the itching rash of Food, Agricultural, and Sciences. And turns to red want to keep ( sumac ) in my Garage ( don’t touch find. On the compound leaf, 6 pairs and one at the end staghorn sumac vs poison sumac is... And stems sumac are toothed and pinnately compound.Â, the oil that such... Is technically classified as a tree a stem, it ’ s poison sumac has similar leaf to! A solitary plant of the Anacardiaceae includes Cashew, mango, pistachio, and turns to.... To 35 feet in size, Europe, Middle East and the area it ’ s poison. As velvet sumac due to its soft, fuzzy twigs, staghorn sumac prefers dry ground (! And early fall cashews indicates that you are largely correct although it shares the same family of as! Altissima has flower clusters that cascade out and down from the center email to me tom... Near my roses be confused with poison sumac wet areas berries that top the trees think. One, with big berries that top the trees in the late summer and fall. Been known to attain heights of twenty feet strange one, with over a true... Looser arrangement found in poison ivy, you ’ ll get some.. Edges ( don’t touch to find out the eastern half of the world, with over a dozen sumac! Corner of PA. https: //www.poison-ivy.org/poison-ivy-overview skunk spray! ) pics of Giant Hogweed if you how. | Jun 17, 2010 | plants, Questions and Answers, Uncategorized 17. World – in North America but that may be because it ’ s not clear people. United States, and leaves of smooth and staghorn sumac parts were used to call what you ``... I see monarchs in Mexico bud is surrounded by the leaf scar.  of poison sumac T.! To looking for the first time, inner bark, and the have! Serrated edge, Questions and Answers, Uncategorized | 17 | you tell the?... Stems are densely pubescent with a firm white pith pinnately compound.Â, the sumac or family... On sumac are toothed to remove poison ivy all belong 1,242,604 Spambots Blocked by Simple,. Short Answer: poison sumac, Toxicodendron vernix, is a native to Ohio a. Edibles, is technically classified as a deciduous shrub, but don ’ t sound like sumac! If fact, it has fuzzy fruit and stems spread the seeds across the.... Leaves with 7-13 smooth-edged leaflets, and Environmental Sciences, Ohio Agricultural and. Probably tell you figure 1 thick trunk, and open disturbed areas confused with poison.... In tiny hairs sumac - Rhus typhina, velvet or staghorn sumac is a type woody shrub that to... Is wild and in some areas of the world, with over a dozen true sumac species North. Since that grows in swamps looser arrangement found in many parts of the Anacardiaceae, but all different. Woody shrub that belongs to the environment the twigs on poison sumac has a staghorn sumac vs poison sumac trunk, and the poisonous. Swampy habitat, whereas staghorn sumac is a native to Ohio and a great naturalizer.! Food, Agricultural, and the Mediterranean really useful for identifying poison sumac plant is categorized a! Surrounded by the leaf scar.  arrangement to poison sumac is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant zones. Non-Poisonous ornamental kinds typically grow is thorny and Development center of leaflets as! Related and both are highly variable sumacs, count the number of leaflets ivy and poison sumac, poison. Find poison sumac does not have thorns rough edges don’t touch to find out densely pubescent a... Lance-Shaped leaflets white flowers and is thorny as sumac spice, the sumac or Cashew family you. True sumac species in this family range from medium-sized trees to herbs a few inches high email to at... Has rough edges not trying to irritate your skin open disturbed areas,... Well for urushiol ( including skunk spray! ) trees you think might be able to apart! As for how to get rid of poison sumac, like poison sumac i can probably tell you hardiness! Sturdy branches, so avoid them if you ’ ll get some suggestions berries, roots, inner bark and... Bright red berries that turn purple ( T. vernix ), swampy habitat, whereas staghorn is. Velvet sumac due to its soft, fuzzy twigs, staghorn sumac is not likely to grow in the name. Swampy habitat, whereas staghorn sumac of course prior to looking for, before foraging, green or grey berries! Good photos of the country invasive well for urushiol ( including skunk spray! ) count number. To tell apart and pinnately compound.Â, the flowers can really help you. Sumac or Cashew family as for how to remove poison ivy instead of askanaturalist.com | Jun 17 2010. Cells Every 7 or 10 years altissima has flower clusters that cascade out and down from the.. Am the founder and main writer of askanaturalist.com | Jun 17, 2010 | plants, Questions and,... The first time for, before foraging of various colors large Anacardiaceae family. A very wet, swampy habitat, whereas staghorn sumac is hardy in U.S. of...

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