Rhus trilobata

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Rhus trilobata
Rhus trilobata
Rhus trilobata

Species Name: Rhus trilobata
Common Name: Basket Bush, Skunkbush

Bright red fall color. Beautiful red berries in summer beloved by birds. Very attractive hedge or low sprawling shrub. Regular garden care.

Plant Family: Anacardiaceae
Plant Type: Shrub
Height by Width: 3-5' H x 4' W
Growth Habit: Sprawling to upright
Deciduous/Evergreen: Winter deciduous
Growth Rate: Moderate
Sun Exposure: Full sun to part shade
Soil Preference: Well-draining
Water Requirements: Drought-tolerant to moderate
Cold Hardy to: 15 degrees F
Flower Season: Spring
Flower Color: Pale yellow
Endangered?: Not listed
Distribution: Widely distributed throughout the Western states
Natural Habitat: Slopes, washes, shrubland

Songbird iconA.jpg Slope iconA.jpg

Care and Maintenance

  • Introduced into cultivation in California by Theodore Payne.
  • From California Native Plants, Theodore Payne's 1941 catalog: "Diffusely branched deciduous shrub of spreading habit with pretty deeply cut leaves which turn red in the fall. very desirable for dry banks and hillsides. Gallon cans, 50c."
Other Names
  • Bornstein, Carol, David Fross, and Bart O'Brien. California Native Plants for the Garden. Los Olivos, CA: Cachuma Press. 2005.