Rhus, Staghorn Sumac, Velvet Sumac 'Tiger Eyes'

Rhus typhina

Family: Anacardiaceae (an-a-kard-ee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rhus (roos) (Info)
Species: typhina (ty-FEE-nuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Tiger Eyes
Additional cultivar information:(PP16185, aka Bailtiger)
Hybridized by Jorgensen
Registered or introduced: 2004
View this plant in a garden




Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

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)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:

Scarlet (dark red)

Gold (yellow-orange)


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:


Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Opelika, Alabama

Livermore, California

Los Altos, California

San Jose, California

San Leandro, California

Tracy, California

Centralia, Illinois

Chadwick, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Crystal Lake, Illinois

Decatur, Illinois

Peoria, Illinois

Saint Charles, Illinois

Waukegan, Illinois

Crown Point, Indiana(2 reports)

Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Conrad, Iowa

Iowa City, Iowa

Pacific Junction, Iowa

Lawrence, Kansas

Union, Kentucky

Dracut, Massachusetts

Roslindale, Massachusetts

Adrian, Michigan

Ludington, Michigan

Andover, Minnesota

Cannon Falls, Minnesota

Minneapolis, Minnesota(2 reports)

Saint Cloud, Minnesota

Waite Park, Minnesota

Saint Peters, Missouri

Helena, Montana

Kalispell, Montana

Bellevue, Nebraska

Trenton, New Jersey

Rochester, New York

Wykagyl, New York

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Fargo, North Dakota

Mansfield, Ohio

Enid, Oklahoma

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Beaverton, Oregon(12 reports)

Cheshire, Oregon

Clackamas, Oregon

Gold Hill, Oregon

Happy Valley, Oregon

Sunnyside, Oregon

Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania

Webster, South Dakota

Memphis, Tennessee

Montague, Texas

Richmond, Utah

Barre, Vermont

Amelia Court House, Virginia

Lexington, Virginia

Mc Lean, Virginia

Petersburg, Virginia

East Port Orchard, Washington

Langley, Washington

Parkwood, Washington

Port Orchard, Washington

Seattle, Washington(2 reports)

Spokane, Washington

Vancouver, Washington

Chilton, Wisconsin

Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin

Kendall, Wisconsin

Laramie, Wyoming

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 4, 2021, Larkz from Crystal Lake, IL wrote:

Tiger Eye Sumac hybrid has been sold and promoted as not being as aggressive as its parent sumacs, but that is largely false. This plant is the single most aggressive that I've ever added to my landscape.

It is an attractive plant with an interesting form, and the trunk can be shaped creatively with trimming, so that much is good. The color is usually nice, bright yellow-green in spring and summer, reddish-orange in the fall (very briefly before it loses its leaves). And it grows quickly into a small tree.

But this plant's roots will burrow under barriers as deep as 18 inches (solid concrete) and travel 30 feet or more, springing up pups everywhere. My two sumacs are on a small berm with timber walls, surrounded by mulch trails and a sidewalk. It goes under th... read more


On May 2, 2019, fmdehner from Reynoldsburg, OH wrote:

can anyone tell me if there's has lost its pretty chartruse color? Mine came back grass green this year, honestly I have no use for more grass green.


On Jul 7, 2015, Memphisgreen from Memphis, TN wrote:

I have had Tiger eye planted for 2-3 years in a very sunny spot in the middle of the yard. It is a beautiful focal point for my yard. However, this year I have noticed the lower branches dying off, wilting, turning orange (almost as if it is autumn). The upper branches are vibrant and green but the lower branches continue to die and wilt. I have no clue as to why this is happening.

Has anyone had this experience with Tiger eye?


On Jul 1, 2015, Alice344 from Seattle, WA wrote:

I read this post when our landscaper planted this sumac
That was three years ago.
And it didn't sucker the first year, but it started suckering last year, and now that it is a six foot by eight feet wide amazingly beautiful specimen, it sends up little suckers daily.

I love the looks of this plant.
It is the centerpiece of my yard.
I planted it where it is bound by concrete.
The roots are at surface so it is easy to see where suckers are being sent up and just rub them off the roots daily. It stops when we get dry weather.
Don't plant under the sumac so you can see the suckers.

I hope it doesn't get too aggressive
But whoever said it doesn't sucker was crazy or trying to sell the plant.
My ex landscaper ... read more


On Aug 14, 2014, Terri1948 from Yorkshire,

No doubt about it, this is a beautiful shrub/tree and the foliage is very attractive.
However, if you are tempted to buy it, try growing in a very strong metal container. Even then, the roots will find their way through the holes in the bottom if the container stands on a lawn or anywhere where there is soil. Personally, I would stand it on concrete.
As others have said, those roots will spread and cause havoc unless controlled.


On May 11, 2014, gmary from Union, KY wrote:

Planted this last year in an underground pot to try to keep it in check in two different locations. This spring there were sprouts everywhere. The roots climbed out of the pots and spread everywhere. I pulled and pulled roots from everywhere.
Please heed the warning. They are very Beautiful. But be smart and plant where it can spread. Not in landscape or border garden. Lesson learned.


On Mar 10, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

With beautiful chartreuse color on a lacy dissected leaf, this is the most exciting staghorn sumac cultivar, interesting and beautiful all season, with excellent orange-to-red fall color. Like all staghorn sumacs, its winter appearance is coarse.

Staghorn sumac is by nature multitrunked. It suckers from wide-spreading roots to form large clumps many yards across---much like a running bamboo. It's not a plant for a small residential yard or garden, unless you confine the roots or enjoy the never-ending job of pulling out sumac suckers. It does not mix well with other shrubs or perennials in a border or foundation planting.

Its spread can be arrested by a metal or heavy plastic root barrier a foot deep. This will have a dwarfing effect. Eventually the colony wil... read more


On Jun 25, 2013, EA3 from Long Creek, IL wrote:

I have had this tree about 7 years. Its foliage is beautiful in each season here in the Midwest, as everyone has mentioned. Unfortunately, the roots are beginning to sprout more and more new young plants . When I dig them up I reach the tree root that about 1.5" and it makes a big hole when I dig up. The sprouts are showing up near the tree and also about 6ft. from it-in my neighbors yard who does not like plants. Considering whether to remove it while I can.


On Jun 5, 2013, ms_greenjeans from Hopkins, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

Just planted one of these in my border near the alley, next to a patch of goutweed. I have heard varying opinions about the sumac being invasive; if it is, I am hoping that the two species fighting it out will keep each other in check. This is because I removed a lot of ditch lilies from that area last year, and the goutweed spread more than it ever had in the previous 20 years, so I figured the two aggressive species had been controlling each other. We'll see what happens. I do hope it works, because the Tiger Eyes sumac is very pretty.


On May 28, 2012, Biker1 from McLean, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:

It looked great the first year. The next year the leader branch died during the winter. Worst of all was the aggressive rooting of this plant. It ran and ran and ran. I have to remove ALL of it.


On May 19, 2012, Baer1 from Chilliwack , BC (Zone 8a) wrote:

Have planted in a 4'x4'x3' high raised bed made of PT 4x4s. Surrounded with June bearing strawberries. No issues with suckering. Looks beautiful with the dark green strawb leaves.


On Jun 27, 2011, oscarkat01 from Rochester, NY (Zone 6a) wrote:

My instinct when I first bought it was to avoid it but I feel in love with the looks. Unfortunately for me, I have limited places to put it due to deer destroying it. It outgrew two different places I planted it. The second time I moved it, the remaining roots started suckering like mad. I now constantly pulling up new plants that spring up 6-9 inches overnight. It sent roots under my sidewalk even. It is such a hassle I would never plant it again. If someone decides to plant it, do not put it in a flower bed with other plants and don't put it near a house or walkway. If you have deer, don't bother.


On Jun 23, 2011, mknatali from Richmond, UT wrote:

I have seen Tiger Eyes Sumac growing in planters and they are beautiful. I love the color and the way they grow. I just bought one and was assured they do not succor, but my research today proves otherwise. Mine is in a large pot. I have contained other plants by cutting off the bottom of the pot, leaving the sides around the root ball and planting the tree in the pot to force the roots downward. Do you think this would keep mine from succoring?


On Jun 11, 2011, Loued007 from Wykagyl, NY wrote:

After 3 years of loving the look of this plant, we've just torn it out of the garden. The roots, and plantlets along the way, went 10 feet in all directions. Yes, easy to pull up but it certainly did damage. We had it on the edge of a garden in suburbia and it extended into our neighbors' lawn and bed. We were unable to try to contain it (like a bamboo) because of our garden limitations- but that certainly seems worth a try. My personal choice - no plant is worth the worry, work and problems of invasiveness. Sorry to be so negative to all of you who REALLY want this plant. Good luck.


On Aug 14, 2009, SW_gardener from (Zone 6a) wrote:

Beautiful and fast growing! Has put on alot of new growth since planted earlier in the season.


On Jul 20, 2009, Valerie_M from Lancaster, PA wrote:

I agree that this is a visually stunning plant. But it has become invasive in my garden. Fortunately, the suckers are fairly easy to pull up but they take other neighboring plants with them.


On Aug 25, 2007, jkramer from Saint Charles, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:

Lovely bush. It sends out sucker shoots up to two feet away from the main stem. These little shoots can be dug up and replanted elsewhere. Cutting the root from the main bush will cause them to wilt when transplanted, but the little shoots soon perk up and begin to grow on their own.


On Oct 14, 2006, Soferdig from Kalispell, MT (Zone 4b) wrote:

This plant is now after 2 years of spectacular spring chartreuse to vairgated orange/green summer to the most spectacular long lasting fall colors of yellow to orange.


On Nov 24, 2005, bonniewong from edmonton,
Canada wrote:

I love this new cultivar, the colors are unreal and look good with everything from pastels to orange to bright red. It has steadly grown since planted, with a sucker coming up a few inches from the one stem.


On Oct 18, 2005, CWinge from Cannon Falls, MN wrote:

New growth starts out a gorgeous lime green turning to yellow.
Leaf stems are a fuzzy pink-rosy purple which adds a nice contrast.
In fall the leafs turn an intense red, orange & yellow.
Will drop some leaf stems in late fall.