Cotinus coggygria, syn. Rhus cotinus (Eurasian smoketree, smoke tree, or smoke bush) is a species of flowering plant in the family Anacardiaceae, native to a large area from southern Europe, east across central Asia and the Himalayas to northern China.
It is a multiple-branching shrub growing to 5–7 m (16–23 ft) tall with an open, spreading, irregular habit, only rarely forming a small tree. The leaves are 3-8 cm long rounded ovals, green with a waxy glaucous sheen. The autumn colour can be strikingly varied, from peach and yellow to scarlet. The flowers are numerous, produced in large inflorescences 15–30 cm (5.9–12 in) long; each flower 5-10 mm diameter, with five pale yellow petals. Most of the flowers in each inflorescence abort, elongating into yellowish-pink to pinkish-purple feathery plumes (when viewed en masse these have a wispy 'smoke-like' appearance, hence the common name) which surround the small (2-3 mm) drupaceous fruit that do develop.
Cultivation and uses
The wood was formerly used to make the yellow dye called young fustic.
- "RHS Plant Selector Cotinus coggygria AGM / RHS Gardening". Apps.rhs.org.uk. http://apps.rhs.org.uk/plantselector/plant?plantid=2538. Retrieved 2012-10-01.
- "RHS Plant Selector Cotinus coggygria 'Royal Purple' AGM / RHS Gardening". Apps.rhs.org.uk. http://apps.rhs.org.uk/plantselector/plant?plantid=559. Retrieved 2012-10-01.
- "RHS Plant Selector Cotinus 'Flame' AGM / RHS Gardening". Apps.rhs.org.uk. http://apps.rhs.org.uk/plantselector/plant?plantid=560. Retrieved 2012-10-01.