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Sugar bush, Chaparral Sumac
Scientific Name: Rhus ovata S. Watson
Synonym: Schmaltzia ovata
Family: Anacardiaceae
Sugar bush, Chaparral Sumac (Rhus  ovata) Recommended Temperature Zone:
sunset: 7-24
USDA: 7b-10

Sun Exposure: Full sun

Origin: Arizona, California, northwestern Mexico, 4000 to 6000 feet elevation (1200-1800 m), in canyons

Growth Habits: Large evergreen bush, slowly growing to 10 to 15 feet tall (3-4.5 m), 12 feet wide (3.6 m); shaggy gray brown bark; trunk, up to 5 inches in diameter (12 cm); large fragrant ovate leathery leaves, 2.8 to 4 inches long (7-10 cm), with paler undersides

Watering Needs: Little to moderate water, drought tolerant, well drained soil

Propagation: Seeds, heeled semihardwood cuttings in summer, root cuttings in December, suckers


Cultural Practices:
Plant in the fall or in winter.

Blooming Habits:
The Sugar bush has large clusters of pinkish buds becoming creamy flowers in late spring to summer.

Fruiting Habits:
The hairy reddish berries, 0.12 inch in diameter (3 mm), can be eaten raw or cooked, it has a thin layer of flesh. It can also be soaked for 30 to 60 minutes in water to make a refreshing lemonade like drink.

Propagation:
Seeds must be soaked for a day before planting. This treatment is more effective the water is warm (90F - 32C) when you start the soaking.


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Desert-Tropicals is dedicated to provide gardening advice, gardening ideas, and information about flower of all kind for landscape and collections. We try to check carefully the identification of the plants on the illustrations as well as the other information from the page, but occasionally errors do occur. if you notice anything that needs to be changed please contact us. Thanks.

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