Tiger Eye Sumac – Regina SK

(Question)

I have planted Tiger Eye Sumac trees in planters in my yard this summer, and they are thriving. I am wondering if I move them into my heated garage if they would survive the winter so I can use them in my pots again next spring.

(Answer)

The botanical name for your plant is Rhus typhina “tiger eyes“.  It is a dwarf, golden-leaved, staghorn sumac cultivar that typically matures to 6’ tall and as wide. Presumably you have pretty large containers for your plants. This plant has striking foliage throughout the growing season. The new growth starts out a vivid chartreuse, but soon changes to a bright yellow. In autumn the plants turn a brilliant scarlet-orange layered over the yellow.

“Tiger Eyes” is good to grow in Zones 4-8, which means it would not survive a Saskatchewan winter if left outside in a container. The freezing and thawing cycles of winter would damage the roots. A heated garage sounds an ideal place to overwinter your plants. You have probably thought of this already, but placing the pots on a moveable base with castors will help with the move into the garage. Since this plant is deciduous it will go through a dormant period. Water plant sparingly over the winter.

The following articles provides some extra information on “Tiger Eyes”.

http://www.uaex.edu/yard-garden/resource-library/plant-week/sumac-tiger-eye-9-27-13.aspx