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Smokebush

Cotinus coggygria

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Smokebush (Cotinus coggygria) at Snavely's Garden Corner

Smokebush in bloom

Smokebush in bloom

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  10 feet

Spread:  10 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  4b

Other Names:  Smoketree

Description:

One of the better known shrubs for garden use, the species itself features deep green leaves with absolutely superb fall colors, flowers and inflorescences give a fuzzy, smoky appearance throughout summer, hence the name; good cultivars available

Ornamental Features

Smokebush features airy panicles of yellow flowers with rose stalks at the ends of the branches from early to late summer. It has dark green foliage throughout the season. The round leaves turn an outstanding scarlet in the fall. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Smokebush is a multi-stemmed deciduous shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Smokebush is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Mass Planting
  • Hedges/Screening
  • General Garden Use

Planting & Growing

Smokebush will grow to be about 10 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 10 feet. It tends to be a little leggy, with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This shrub should only be grown in full sunlight. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under average home landscape conditions. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments, and will benefit from being planted in a relatively sheltered location. This species is not originally from North America.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Accent  Massing  Screening  Garden 
Applications
Flowers  Fall Color 
Ornamental Features

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