Is this poison sumac

Asked June 18, 2020, 10:53 AM EDT

Hi there. This small tree has grown very rapidly in my backyard, adjacent to wetlands. It currently stands 8-9 feet tall. Is it poison sumac? If not, can you please identify what it is and tell us if it is otherwise poisonous? Thanks!

Livingston County Michigan

1 Response

From these photos it does look like sumac an not tree of heaven as the leaflets do not show the characteristic notches at the base. (

Definitely not poison sumac. Although on a rare occasion, i have seen it growing in an upland area, it is most often found in wide open, wet or boggy situations. The limbs are characteristic and the leaflets gently arch downward. (actually a sunning plant!) It is sometimes easiest to ID these plants when they are blooming and later on fruiting. There are many types of sumac native to Michigan.

The most common sumac around Michigan is called staghorn sumac, which also has a red fruit in late summer on top. (

We also have a number of invasives that can be observed in Michigan. This does not appear to be one of them.

I do want to draw your attention to what is UNDER the tree, however, you have several plants of Poison Ivy lurking!