Sumac Trees with Red Berries in Winter.

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Red Barn Farms, May 28, 2012.

  1. Red Barn Farms

    Red Barn Farms ~Friendly Fowl~

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    Seems as a small child I can remember my father going out in the fall of the year and picking Sumac berries to feed to the chickens. Has anyone else heard of this being done? We have these trees growing against the edge of our property down by a creek. In the fall and winter when all else is dormant and bare you can see red berries growing from the trees. The bright red berries look rather beautiful against a white snow background. I've watched wild birds land and feed on the berries. I do not plan on feeding them to my flock. Just curious if anyone else has heard of this.



    Smooth sumac (Rhus glabra)
    It grows to a height of about 10 feet. It bears alternately arranged leaves with serrated edges, which change to a crimson hue when fall approaches. Smooth sumac produces small green clusters of flowers in spring, which later in the year give way to bright-red berries that last all through the colder months.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Tigertrea

    Tigertrea Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Staghorn sumac berries are good to eat. I planned on harvesting some this past fall for myself but, never got around to it. Native North Amreicans (and other cultures) have used sumac for cooking, teas and healing for "ever".

    If I harvest some this year I will not feed them to my flock either. I will dry them to use as a seasoning in my cooking and to make sumac tea. It tastes lemony. (I did make some this past fall...yummy)
     
  3. Red Barn Farms

    Red Barn Farms ~Friendly Fowl~

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    Thinking WAY back, LOL I do remember my 'Cherokee" grandmother making a sort of lemon-aide from these wild berries. It was very yummy! These are very evasive trees. I have been trying to kill 'thin" them out for the past few years with little results.
     
  4. Ullie

    Ullie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have so many of these shrub like trees, their roots are like spaghetti underground very difficult to eliminate.

    I notice the birds eat their red seed flower like clusters closer to the middle and end of winter. Was also wondering if this type of sumac is safe for the chickens?
     
  5. Red Barn Farms

    Red Barn Farms ~Friendly Fowl~

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    It's my understanding from information I have read online they are not poisonous to poultry. Our chickens are around the trees and fallen berries and do not pay them any attention.
     
  6. ChicwannaB

    ChicwannaB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I planted a "Tiger Eyes" Sumac in my chickens run hoping it will grow up nice and tall and won't be poisonous to my girls. The Tiger Eyes variety is also a Staghorn, so I'm hoping this is good news. I have read it is very invasive as it spreads by runners underground. I hope I don't regret this move.
     
  7. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    I like staghorn sumac very much, but it is a 'forever' plant. VERY difficult to eliminate once established. Mowing the shoots down will discourage it, but beware! Mary
     
  8. ChicwannaB

    ChicwannaB Chillin' With My Peeps

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    a lot like horseradish [​IMG]
     

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