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  Rhus copallinum 1.jpg 

 

NAME: Winged Sumac

SPECIES / FAMILY:  Rhus copallina / Anacardiaceae

OTHER COMMON NAME(S):  Smooth Sumac, Dwarf Sumach, Flameleaf Sumac, Winged Sumac, Shining Sumac

CONDITIONS: sun-partial shade
 

PARTS:

EDIBLE cid:image001.jpg@01D3EC3E.A305A520

TASTE

RAW/COOK

SEASON

All

 

 

 

 

Shoots

 

 

 

 

Leaves

       

Stalk/Stem

 

 

 

 

Buds

       

Flowers

 

 

 

 

Fruits

lemon

RAW/DRY

Summer

Pods

 

 

   

Seeds

 

 

 

 

Nuts

 

 

 

 

Roots

 

 

 

 

Bark

 

 

 

 

 

PORTION: small

 

COMMENT: Fruit - raw or cooked. The fruit is small with very little flesh, but it is easily harvested and when soaked for 10 - 30 minutes in hot water or 2-4 hours in cold water makes a very refreshing lemonade-like drink (without any fizz of course). The mixture should not be boiled since this will release tannic acids and make the drink astringent. The fruit can also be dried and ground into a powder then mixed with corn meal and used in cakes, porridges etc.

 

CAUTION: Anyone with known allergies to any member of the Cashew Family should avoid consuming sumac. There are some suggestions that the sap of this species can cause a skin rash in susceptible people, but this has not been substantiated.(1)

 

NUTRITION/MEDICINAL:

 

LOOK-A-LIKES:  

 

POISONOUS LOOK-A-LIKES: 

 

OTHER USES: The leaves are rich in tannin, so is the bark and the fruit. The leaves can be collected as they fall in the autumn and used as a brown dye or as a mordant. The leaves contain 10 - 25% tannin. An oil is extracted from the seeds. It attains a tallow-like consistency on standing and is used to make candles. These burn brilliantly, though they emit a pungent smoke. The plants extensive root system makes it useful for stabilizing soils. A black dye is obtained from the fruit. A resin, 'copal resin', is obtained from the sap of this plant. When dissolved in any volatile liquid, such as oil of turpentine, it makes a beautiful varnish. (1)

 

SOURCE LINKS (may include nutritional and medicinal info, plus other uses):

  1. https://pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Rhus+copallina
  2. http://www.eattheweeds.com/sumac-more-than-just-native-lemonade
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhus_copallinum
  4. https://edibleplantproject.org/sumac
  5. http://www.aihd.ku.edu/foods/smooth_sumac.html