Smooth sumac, common sumac, Pennsylvania sumac, scarlet sumac, shernoke, sumac, upland sumac, vinegar tree.
A shrub or small tree that grows to about 15 feet in height. Leaves are 1 to 3 feet long. With 11 to 31 leaflets; each leaflet is 2 to 4 inches long and about 1 to 2 inches wide, pointed and sharp-toothed. Twigs are smooth. Produces greenish yellow flowers in clumps at branch ends, and roundish, flattened, bright red fruits or berries that are hairy and sticky.
May to July.
Old fields, power line cuts, roadsides, meadows, and pastures.
Bark of stem and roots, ripe fruit, and leaves.
The dried ripe fruit of sumac is valuable as a source of tannic acid. Preparations of these fruits are effective as astringents, antidiuretics, and tonics. In Appalachia, leaves are smoked to treat asthma. The stems produce a yellow dye.