• Gros plan sur le feuillage vert à formes variables du SASSAFRAS albidum
  • Bright red and yellow autumn leaf of SASSAFRAS albidum
  • Deep red autumn leaves of SASSAFRAS albidum
  • Green and red leaves of SASSAFRAS albidum at the beginning of autumn



This sassafras is outstanding with its leaves of 3 different forms on the same plant. SASSAFRAS albidum has beautiful red/orange/yellow autumn colors. This is a rare/unusual plant.


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SASSAFRAS albidum, also called white sassafras or silky sassafras, is an unusual plant. Curiously, this deciduous plant produces three forms of foliage simultaneously (one-lobed, two-lobed and three-lobed, see photos).
Moreover, the green leaves transform in autumn into a real fireworks display. In fact, they then take on very intensive colors of yellow, orange and red (see photos).
Even if this plant is classified as a tree, remember that it only grows very slowly and can be considered a small, or even tiny, tree. It has a bushy shape and flowers green/yellow before the leaves appear. The fruits take on a blue/black color and have a reddish stem.

How to plant SASSAFRAS albidum

Find a spot in partial shade or full sun. It can find its place in a bedding or isolated.
The soil can be moist, moderately moist or even dry. However, this tiny tree prefers humidity.
Furthermore, the soil should be well drained and light or normal, but not heavy with an acidic or neutral pH.

For a good preparation of the pot or ground, we have designed specific instructions available here. Furthermore, discover here how to water your garden and save water.

History and Origin

Thomas Nuttall first described SASSAFRAS albidum in 1818 under the name Laurus albida. Christian Gottfried Daniel Nees von Esenbeck gave it the current name in 1836.
Other synonyms exist, such as: Laurus sassafras, S. albidum var. molle, S. officinalis or even S. variifolium.

S. albidum finds its origins in eastern North America: Ontario (Canada) and many states of the United States of America in this region.
It is found in very different habitats: Forests, bare lands or even erosion lands.
It also grows in the virgin forest of Venezuela.

Furthermore, sassafras oil is obtained by steam distillation from the bark and fruits. This oil is also called Safrole. It is used as a perfume and aroma.
Then, some indigenous peoples used the branches as chewing wood. Substances from the bark are sometimes used in toothpastes.
Safrole also provides raw materials for the production of Ecstasy (MDMA). As such, the trade in Sassafras extracts is prohibited in the European Union.
Finally, sassafras wood can be used in making instruments.

Additional information

Approximate height after 10 years

sun requirements


In spring interesting for


In summer interesting for

In autumn interesting for

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humidity requirement

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