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Rhus lancea

African Sumac
  • Plant Type:
  • Tree
  • Evergreen-Deciduous:
  • Evergreen
  • Overall Mature Size:
  • Medium
  • Also Grown As:
  • Multi Trunk, Standard Tree
  • Mature Height & Spread :
  • 20-30' x 20-35'
  • Natural Growth Habit:
  • Rounded
  • Native To:
  • Africa
  • Exposure:
  • Full Sun
  • Water:
  • Medium Water, Low Water
  • Flower Color:
  • Insignificant
  • Bloom Time:
  • Spring
  • Special Features:
  • Attractive Bark, Attracts Birds/Butterflies, Deer Resistant, Desert Conditions, Drought Resistant, Seacoast Conditions
  • Container Sizes:
  • #15, 24" Box, 36" Box, 48" Box
  • Sunset Garden Zones:
  • 8, 9, 12-24


Spreading cooling shade throughout desert, inland, and coastal regions, Rhus lancea is a South African native that has become extremely popular for use on medians, lawns, parking lots and parks. An evergreen tree that grows slowly to 30’ tall and 35’ wide, it is available at Boething Treeland in standard and multi-trunk forms. Its narrow willow-like leaves are 45 inches long and borne in three leaflets, a sure sign that these are adapted to drought and desert conditions. The foliage is dark green and pendulous, giving it a graceful and relaxed appearance. African Sumac is prized for its naturally rounded form, attractive bark and deer resistance as well as for its ability to grow inland or on the coast. It loves well-drained and sandy soils, needs little to moderate water and does best in Sunset Western Garden zones 8, 9, and 12-24.