General: Rue Family (Rutaceae). It is an aromatic, native, perennial tree or shrub that can grow from 1 to 8 meters tall. The branches are dark brown and armed with 8 to 13 mm-long prickles. When broken, the twigs have a strong odor reminiscent of crushed lemon peel. The leaf buds (1mm long) are red and woolly. The leaves (1 to 30 cm long) are composed of 5 to 11 ovate, pinnately arranged leaflets (4 to 8 cm long). The dark green and lustrous leaves are dotted with translucent glands. The lower portion of the leaf is a lighter pubescent green beneath. The greenish-yellow flowers (3 to 3.5 mm wide) appear in the spring before the leaves. The small fruits are capsules (0.5 to 0.6 cm). Each fruit contains one seed. The fruit ripens in late summer, turning from green to reddish brown. When the seeds mature, they hang exposed from the split capsules.
Distribution: For current distribution, please consult the Plant Profile page for this species on the PLANTS Web site.
Habitat: This plant occurs along riverbanks and in moist ravines, thickets, and woods. It is also found in somewhat drier areas such as upland rocky hillsides, bluffs, and open woods.
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