plant identification — Ohio Buckeye


is this a type of chestnut tree? If so, would they be edible? Thanks!


Thank you so much for contacting the Toronto Master Gardeners with this important q1uestion. We believe that this tree is an Ohio Buckeye (Aesculus Glabra).

To immediately get to your question: do not eat the seeds! There are three seeds in each capsule, and they are poisonous! The rest of the plant, the leaves and the stalks, are also poisonous if swallowed.

Besides this very important detail, you are very lucky to have this tree in your line of sight. It is a most beautiful specimen. The tree is the Ohio State’s symbol and is also Ohio’s state tree. It can grow 50′ high. It has beautiful blossoms in the spring, pumpkin-orange coloured fall leaves, and has a gorgeous shape creating a wide canopy.

Buckeye and horse chestnut trees belong to the soapberry family, named Sapindaceae, genus Aesculus. They are not at all related to true chestnut trees, which are part of the beech family, despite the horse chestnut name and some physical similarities.

For more information, you can follow these links:

University of Kentucky, Dept. of Agriculture.; Ohio State University