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- Latin Name- Sassafras Albidum Hardy Planting Zone- 4-9 Mature Height- 30-60 ft Width- 25-40 ft Sun or Shade- Full Sun
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Sassafras tree is a deciduous native to North America and Asia.
The American species is Sassafras albidum. The tree is easily recognized by its three leaf shapes: oval, one and two-lobed. The leaves and bark have a distinctive sweet aroma and flavor. The leaves turn from green to bright orange-pink, yellow-red and scarlet-purple in autumn. The leaves are mucilaginous. The root bark is used for tea. The leaves and root bark are used medicinally. It has been used for fever, rheumatism, gout and eye irritation among other things. No part of the tree is approved for use in the United States because the active constituent, safrole, has been found to be carcinogenic.
American sassafras trees grow up to 60 feet tall. The bark is reddish-brown or orange-brown. The trees produce yellow blooms in the spring. Sassafras will grow in well-drained loam, clay and sandy soils. Acidity is not a problem if well drained. The tree lives an average of 100 years and can live up to 500 years.
The Sassafras tree also referred to as the “Mitten Tree,” is a typical plant that is known for its fragrance, flavor, and health benefits.
The height of the tree can range from thirty to one hundred and fifty feet tall and can grow up to four feet per year. This tree is native to eastern North America as well as East Asia and can be found in fields, roadsides, and woodlands. As a young tree, it has a greenish bark, as it ages the bark will turn to a reddish brown color. A Sassafras averages one hundred years of life. It has a distinct oval-shaped three-leaf pattern and will produce greenish-yellow flowers once the leaves unfold between March and April. Depending on rainfall, the tree will lose all of its leaves for a period during the year. In the fall, the leaves can change to many different colors including pink, red, and purple. It can grow in many types of soil including dry and sandy varieties. The best spot for the tree to grow is in well-draining and acidic soil. The suitable hardiness for this Sassafras tree is in zones four through nine.