A great tree to use on roadsides or on large properties, Aesculus glabra, also known as the Ohio buckeye tree, is a deciduous medium-sized tree native to Illinois and lower Great Plains of the U.S.
How the Ohio Buckeye Got Its Name
The name of this sturdy tree comes from its fruit: a round nut with a pale round spot on it, resembling a deer’s eye. The nuts and the leaves of the tree are poisonous to humans and cattle, but the tree has many other uses that have been exploited for centuries.
The tree can be easily recognized by its palmately compound leaves. The leaves each have five long and broad, oval-shaped leaflets. Their color is yellow-ish green and develops into a dark green by the end of the summer.
The Ohio buckeye tree can grow 50 feet high. Its growth rate can be affected by pollution, soil, and moisture conditions. It has a medium growth rate, so you can expect it to fully grow in 20-30 years.
How to Plant and Care for an Ohio Buckeye Tree
The Ohio buckeye tree thrives in the Illinois area because the soil is well-drained and more acidic than alkaline. It prefers moist woods, so be sure to provide constant moisture, but without overdoing it.
Because the Ohio buckeye is susceptible to quite a number of diseases, it’s best to plant it in a native region and not as a specimen. Also, consider its toxicity in case you have cattle or you want a tree to provide shade and a recreational area.
The Ohio buckeye grows to be 50’ wide, so leave enough space for it if you plant it near other trees or buildings.
Not the Best Choice for Ornamental Purposes
It might not be the most sought after tree for ornamental purposes, but if you are able to provide the perfect environment for it and understand its particularities, the Ohio buckeye tree can be a wonderful addition on your property.
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