Symplocos tinctoria (L.) L'Hér.

Common Sweetleaf, Horsesugar

Family: Symplocaceae

Genus: Symplocos

Category: Tree - Deciduous

Zones: 7 to 9

Size: To 35' tall and 20' wide

Growth Rate: Moderate

Exposure: Sun, Filtered Sun, Part Shade


Alternate leaves to 6", lustrous, dark green. Evergreen in warmer zones. Flowers on previous year's growth, in spring before new leaves, clusters of yellow fluffy flowers, fragrant. Branches curve upward.


Published in Trans. Linn. Soc. London 1: 176 in 1791. L'Hér cites Catseby's Natural History Volume I Plate 54.

Basionym is Hopea tinctoria L. - also referencing Catesby plate 54.

Native to Oklahoma, Texas and the southeast US.

Introduced to cultivation in 1780.

Sources of Information

© 2010-12 Lisa J. Miner