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Growing Sumac

I will be planting wild sumac in my landscape this fall. I used it in my last garden and really loved the tree's shape and lines, and the color in fall was unbeatable. The only problem was it sent up suckers everywhere. What is your opinion of the wild sumac?

Sumac is a beautiful native plant but the suckering makes it a difficult plant to use in most landscapes. I recommend only using it in areas where it has plenty of room to spread and can be contained. I meet too many gardeners that use this in their landscape and spend years trying to get rid of it. On a recent visit to the Chicago Botanic Garden one of the horticulturist said he found that by allowing the large stems to grow instead of renewal pruning (removing older growth) helped reduce suckering. I choose to enjoy the plant as I drive along the freeway or visit naturalized areas and save my limited space for plants with a little more self control.


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