Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Rhus lucida L.

Frost tender shrub or small tree with grey-brown bark, compound leaves with 3 leaflets and terminal or axillary clusters of ivory flowers followed by yellow fruits.  To 4m or more.  [RHSD].

Horticultural & Botanical History

Rhus lucida, L. South Africa. This shrub proved here of particular adaptability for forming hedges. About half a hundred South African species are known, of which probably some could be utilized like ordinary Sumach, but hitherto we have remained unacquainted with the nature and degree of any of their tanning and coloring principles.’  [Ferdinand von Mueller – Select Plants readily eligible for Industrial Culture p.120/1872].

Introduced to Britain in 1697.  [PD].  Figured in Jacquin Sch. vol.3, t.347/1797-1804.

History at Camden Park

First listed in a handwritten note in an 1850 catalogue held at the Mitchell Library [MP A2947A] and subsequently in the 1857 catalogue [T.823/1857].  Possibly introduced to test its potential as a hedging species.


Rhus lucida Ait. (1769) = Rhus mucronata Thunb. from South Africa.

Rhus lucida E.Mey. ex Engl. (1883) = Rhus glauca Thunb. from South Africa.

Published Mar 17, 2010 - 02:52 PM | Last updated Mar 17, 2010 - 03:10 PM

Several images show 3-pinnate leaves, panicles of whitish flowers and yellow berries.  Jacquin Sch. vol.3, t.347, 1797-1804.

Rhus lucida L. | Jacquin Sch. vol.3, t.347/1797-1804 | BHL

Family Anacardiaceae
Region of origin

South Africa

Common Name
Name in the Camden Park Record

Rhus lucidus 

Confidence level high