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We’re excited to be able to offer this special native beauty. You won’t find this one at the box stores! Yellow Buckeye is a glorious but hard-to-locate American tree for large suburban lots, grand estates, and spacious country properties. Assuming in time a bold, upright-rounded shape, it possesses an imposing presence in the landscape. Each year, you’ll look forward to watchingits almost tropical-looking leaves burst forth from fat buds. The pale yellow flowers, doted on by hummingbirds, follow. Tree expert Michael Dirr puts it best when he writes in his famous Manual of Woody Landscape Plants: “I could look at this tree forever.”
- Hardiness Zone: 4-8
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Yellow Buckeye gets its name from its yellow flowers and from its large, smooth seeds, which are thought to resemble a deer’s eye. Where this tree is found in the wild—from Pennsylvania to Alabama, and west to Illinois—Native Americans once included its nutritious seeds as part of their diet. The seeds are quite poisonous off the tree, so the people had to roast them and carefully leach the toxins out before eating them. More recently, the seeds have inspired a “Buckeye” lookalike candy recipe made from peanut butter and chocolate. We prefer the candy version!
But wait, there’s more! Yellow Buckeye is valued for its lovely fall color as well. Each tree is different, but most take on pleasing golden-orange tones when nights begin to turn frosty.
How to Grow
Give Yellow Buckeye ample room to grow, both upwards and outwards, in full sun to part shade. Native to rich, moist, loamy soil, it also appreciates those conditions in the landscape. This tree isn’t the best choice for clay soil or hot, dry sites, though it is more tolerant of adverse conditions than other Buckeyes. It’s relatively resistant to the leaf diseases that plague many Buckeyes and Horsechestnuts, so it will still be looking sharp in the fall, while others may be defoliated. Mulch well with wood chips, shredded bark, or pine straw to conserve moisture, and irrigate regularly to keep your tree looking thrifty.
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