Yellow Horsechestnut (Sweet Buckeye)


Aesculus octandra

Leaves: Deciduous. 5 leaflets spread out like fingers from a palm of a hand, making the leaf compound palmate. Leaflets are 4-6” long, oblong or narrow elliptic in shape. Finely serrated leaf edge. Dark green color above, yellow green beneath. May turn a pumpkin color in fall.

Bark/Twigs: Bark is a combination of gray and brown with large, flat, smooth plates and scales on older trunks.

Flowers/Fruit: Flowers are yellow with a tinge of green and are borne in erect clusters or panicles, 6-7” long by 2-3” wide, in May. Fruit is a smooth, 2-3” long capsule, usually containing two brown seeds.

Mature size and shape: Large. 50’h. Upright oval to slightly spreading crown shape. Larger than A. glabra.

General information/special features: Plant in full sun. Prefers deep, moist, well-drained soil. Very tolerant of dry, alkaline soils.

Landscape use and Maintenance: Large shade tree with dense summer foliage. Average growing rate. Average maintenance.

USDA Hardiness Zone: 4-8

Family/Origin: Hippocastanaceae – Buckeye. Pennsylvania to Tennessee, northern Alabama, and northern Georgia, west to Ohio and Illinois. Also known as Aesculus flava.

Campus use: Rare. Only specimen. Can be found on south side in President’s Circle.