Buckeye Tree Facts: Here's Everything You Need To Know! | Kidadl

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Buckeye Tree Facts: Here's Everything You Need To Know!

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Buckeye trees come under the Aesculus genus of the soapberry family (Sapindaceae).

There are many species of Buckeye trees, which grow all over the United States and Canada. There are even some species of buckeye native to Northern India.

For their attractive candelabra-like flower clusters, a variety of buckeye species are prized as ornamental trees, known for their resemblance to deer's eye and their sticky buds.

Buckeye Tree Classification

Aesculus glabra, sometimes known as Ohio buckeye, or fetid buckeye, is a North American tree belonging to the soapberry family (Sapindaceae).

  • The horse chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum), native to the Balkan region, is a medium to large tree with a rounded crown. The young horse chestnut trees look a lot like Ohio buckeye trees.
  • Red buckeye is a little flowering tree that produces huge panicles of red-to-orange blooms in the spring, making it ideal for use as a specimen or in screens and large hedges.
  • The red buckeye is native to Eastern North America, along with the yellow buckeye.
  • Yellow buckeye is the largest of the native buckeyes.
  • This buckeye is one of the most appealing of all the buckeyes due to its oblong-rounded crown, thick growth, yellow spring flowers, and yellow-orange fall color.
  • Bottlebrush buckeye is a shady deciduous shrub and is native to the southeastern U.S.
  • Bottlebrush buckeye is a great specimen plant, but it may also be mass-planted for shrub borders or islands.
  • Painted buckeye is native to the damp forests in the southeastern United States.
  • This species of shrub, sometimes known as dwarf buckeye, is an excellent understory shrub for shaded regions.
  • California buckeye is a big deciduous plant that grows wild in the California mountains' foothills.
  • The tree goes dormant in the summer.

Identification Of Buckeye Tree

Buckeye leaves are palmately compound, with five long and broad 3.1–6.3 in (8–16 cm) leaves.

  • The four or five merged petals of the bisexual flowers make them quite striking.
  • In the spring, panicles of red, yellow, or yellow-green flowers appear, each flower measuring 0.79–1.18 in (2–3 cm) in length with stamens longer than petals (unlike the similar yellow buckeye, whose stamens are shorter than the petals).
  • The fruit has a diameter of 1.6–2.0 in (4–5 cm) and one nut-like seed with a diameter of 0.79–1.18 in (2–3 cm), brown with a pale basal scar.
  • In the fall, the fruits turn brown and split into three sections, each releasing one to three glossy brown inedible seeds.
  • Both cattle and people are poisoned by the inedible buckeye seeds, which contain tannic acid.
  • To some extent, the young foliage, branches, and bark are also poisonous.
  • The Ohio buckeye, or fetid buckeye, is the state tree of Ohio, and its name comes from a phrase of endearment used by Ohio pioneers.
  • As a result, 'buckeye' became a nickname for individuals from Ohio.
  • The term Buckeyes was formally accepted as Ohio State University's nickname in 1950, and the nickname is also used for its sports teams.
  • Buckeye candy, which resembles the nuts of the state tree, is a favorite treat in Ohio, especially around the holidays and during college football season.
Horse chestnut, also known as Aesculus hippocastanum.

Habitat And Size Of Buckeye Tree

The natural distribution of the Ohio buckeye tree (Aesculus glabra), also known as Texas buckeye, is mostly in the Midwest and lower Great Plains of the United States, spreading southeast into Alabama and Mississippi's geological Black Belt.

  • It can also be found on Walpole Island in Lake St. Clair, in the extreme southwest of Ontario.
  • It can be found in a range of natural settings, including streambanks, upland mesic woods, and the edges of old fields.
  • It's very common in calcareous environments.
  • The tree can reach a height of 70 ft (21.3 m) and has twigs and leaves that emit an unpleasant odor when crushed.
  • The sweet, or yellow buckeye which has yellow blooms and is the largest buckeye species, reaching up to 88.5 ft (27 m) in height, is native to the Appalachian Mountains of eastern United States.
  • The red buckeye is a tiny tree with red blossoms that rarely reaches more than 25 ft (7.6 m) in height.
  • The bottlebrush buckeye is a beautiful shrub endemic to Georgia and Alabama that blooms white flowers in 1 ft (0.30 m) tall erect spikes.
  • Georgia buckeye is a rounded shrub or small tree with yellow to reddish-brown flowers that grow up to 25 ft (7.6 m) tall.
  • The California buckeye has delightfully fragrant white-to-pink flowers that are unique to California and southwestern Oregon.
  • The shrub is rarely grown in eastern gardens because it prefers wet winters and dry summers.
  • The ideal time to gather seeds is during September and October when they begin falling from mature trees.
  • Buckeye seeds should be cultivated in loose, well-worked soil about 6 in (15.2 cm) apart, and at a depth twice the diameter of the seed.
  • Sow the seeds directly outdoors in fall or stratify them indoors and plant in spring.

The Lifespan Of Buckeye Tree

Read about the life span of the buckeye tree-

  • Ohio buckeyes live about 80-100 years.
  • California buckeyes live about 250-300 years on average.
  • Bottlebrush buckeye trees have a median life span of about 20-30 years.

Uses Of Buckeye Tree

The soft, light Ohio buckeye wood makes it unsuitable for use as a lumber tree.

  • The nuts were once also ground and used to poison fish in streams. This made the collection of the fish easier.
  • Buckeye nuts were blanched to extract the tannic acid, which was then used to make leather.
  • The nuts can also be dried and strung into necklaces similar to those produced from the kukui nut in Hawaii, buckeye nuts turn dark as they harden in the air.
  • The buckeye tree is now largely utilized for pulp production or as part of landscaping.
  • Furniture, crates, pallets, and caskets have all been made from buckeye wood in the past.
  • Due to its broad crown, the buckeye grows best in the open and has also been developed as an ornamental shrub.
  • The tree is shade tolerant and one of the earliest to produce leaves in the spring. Therefore it is widely planted as a yard tree.
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Kidadl Team

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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