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Definition of POISON SUMAC
: a swamp shrub (Toxicodendron vernix syn. Rhus vernix) chiefly of the eastern United States and Canada that has pinnate leaves, greenish flowers, and greenish white berries and produces an irritating oil —called also poison dogwood
: an American swamp shrub of the genus Rhus (R. vernix synonym Toxicodendron vernix) that has smooth pinnate leaves, greenish flowers, and greenish white berries and produces an irritating oil—called also poison dogwood
Attractive, narrow shrub or small tree (Rhus vernix or Toxicodendron vernix) of the sumac, or cashew, family. It is native to swampy acidic soils of eastern North America. Unlike the upright reddish, fuzzy fruit clusters of other sumacs, whitish waxy berries droop loosely from its stalks. The clear sap, which blackens on exposure to air, is extremely irritating to the skin for many people.