Sweetleaf Symplocos tinctoria range from Texas to Maryland and all points south and east of that line as well as parts of New York.
Another common name for sweetleaf is horse-sugar.
Sweetleaf plants are a large deciduous shrub rarely growing into a small tree. They have alternate leaves up to 6 inches long that taper at both ends with a yellow to yellow-green petiole. Always there will be black blotches on leaves. Leave often droop.
Not very beneficial for deer but some small animals do eat the seeds and butterflies make good use of the flowers.