Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Sugar Bush, Chapparal Sumac
Rhus ovata

Family: Anacardiaceae (an-a-kard-ee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rhus (roos) (Info)
Species: ovata (oh-VAY-tuh) (Info)

2 members have or want this plant for trade.


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)
8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)
10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)
8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)
10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Late Winter/Early Spring
Mid Spring

Grown for foliage

Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
This plant is fire-retardant

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

Click thumbnail
to view:

By palmbob
Thumbnail #1 of Rhus ovata by palmbob

By Ulrich
Thumbnail #2 of Rhus ovata by Ulrich

By Ulrich
Thumbnail #3 of Rhus ovata by Ulrich

By Kelli
Thumbnail #4 of Rhus ovata by Kelli

By palmbob
Thumbnail #5 of Rhus ovata by palmbob

By palmbob
Thumbnail #6 of Rhus ovata by palmbob

By palmbob
Thumbnail #7 of Rhus ovata by palmbob

There are a total of 14 photos.
Click here to view them all!


1 positive
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral Cindy312 On Mar 15, 2011, Cindy312 from Descanso, CA wrote:

I haven't grown it - am trying to locate a source. It grows on my property, and I'd love to have more of it. I have several trees - 8-12 feet high, and they are pretty, evergreen glossy green leaves, attractive blossoms, and fruit the birds like. It's also said to be fire retardant. Haven't had a problem with runners - perhaps because we are extremely dry here. These trees are never watered artificially - ever. May try propagating from cuttings if I can't find them for sale.

Neutral florablue On Dec 14, 2007, florablue from Key West, FL wrote:

This plant is a garden thug. If it is put into a garden setting, it should be containerized. It propagates by sending out runners which choke out neighboring plants. Once established it is difficult to remove if the gardner should change their mind.

Positive palmbob On Mar 9, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

One of the better looking native shrubs in Southern California (U.S.) this plant has an amazing ability to withstand drought and fire. It is one of the toughest, yet nicest looking shrubs around. Has red berries that reportedly make a nice lemonaid like drink (haven't tried it myself, though). You'll see this plant growing all over the San Gabriel and Santa Monica mountains around Los Angeles.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Agoura Hills, California
Descanso, California
Manhattan Beach, California
Ramona, California
Winchester, California
Las Vegas, Nevada

We recommend Firefox
Overwhelmed? There's a lot to see here. Try starting at our homepage.

[ Home | About | Advertise | Media Kit | Mission | Featured Companies | Submit an Article | Terms of Use | Tour | Rules | Privacy Policy | Contact Us ]

Back to the top

Copyright © 2000-2015 Dave's Garden, an Internet Brands company. All Rights Reserved.

Hope for America