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Cotinus Mill.

Kingdom: Plantae Rank: Genus Parent: Anacardiaceae Status: Valid

Common Names:

  • SMOKETREE - English, United States of America
  • SMOKEWOOD - English, United States of America


Notes: A genus of 3 species, 1 ranging from s Europe to China, 1 in sw China, and 1 in the se U.S. The widespread Old World species, C. coggygria Scop. (WIGTREE, EUROPEAN SMOKETREE), is widely cultivated and the wood yields a yellow dye; it can be distinguished from the native species by its smaller (ca. 4-9 cm long), glabrous, often ovate leaf blades. The smoke-like effect of the plumose fruiting pedicels gave rise to the common name. (Greek: cotinus, ancient name of the wild olive, used by Pliny for an unidentified shrub of the Apennines, but applied by some pre-Linnean botanists, such as Tournefort, to C. coggygria—Brizicky 1962d)