How to Care for an African Sumac Tree

eHow may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Learn more about our affiliate and product review process here.

Things You'll Need

  • Rake

  • Pruning shears

  • Ladder

African sumac trees grow well in arid climates. The tree produces complicated branch patterns and must be pruned frequently. Pruning may take place at any time of year. Sometimes reaching 30 feet in height, the African sumac provides ample shade for plants that thrive at its base.

Step 1

Examine your African sumac to determine whether any dead or dying branches exist. Use a ladder if the branches are out of reach.


Video of the Day

Step 2

Prune dead or dying branches as soon as possible. When pruning large branches on an African sumac, make three cuts. First, cut into the bottom of the branch. Second, cut into the top of the branch at least 4 inches farther from the trunk than the first cut. Finally, cut the side of the branch halfway between the two original cuts.

Step 3

Remove branches that grow straight up from the African sumac's canopy. These branches will not harm the African sumac but will cause it to produce an excess of leaves and berries by allowing it to absorb too much rain.

Step 4

Water an African sumac 10 to 15 times per year, thoroughly soaking the ground around the tree. A fully grown African sumac tree requires approximately 30 gallons of water during each watering session.


Plant your African sumac tree away from concrete because fallen red berries cause staining.


Do not remove more than 25 percent of the African sumac's foliage per year.


Video of the Day


Report an Issue

screenshot of the current page

Screenshot loading...