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Aesculus parviflora Walt.
USDA Symbol: aepa2
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
A distinctive small buckeye, bottlebrush is a mound-shaped, thicket-forming, deciduous shrub, 6-12 ft. tall, with picturesque, ascending, candelabra-like branching. Lowest branches are horizontal and often rest on the ground. Palmately-compound leaves turn from dark-green to yellow-green in fall. Tall, cylindric spikes of feathery white flowers with pink stamens and red anthers bloom in the heat of early summer after other eastern buckeyes have finished. The smooth nut is enclosed by a bright yellow husk.
Though susceptible to leaf scorch, bottlebrush is unique among the buckeyes for retaining its foliage, in good condition, well into fall. It is more tolerant of disease and insects than most buckeyes. Leaves may become quite colorful in fall; seemingly dependent on environmental conditions. Excellent for borders, as a specimen, or under shade trees.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul
AL , DC , GA , NJ , PA , SC Native Distribution:
C. GA to AL & SC Native Habitat:
Rich, mesic woods; moist ravines USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Description: Moist, well-drained, shallow soils over limestone or loamy sands.
Conditions Comments: Though susceptible to leaf scorch, bottlebrush is unique among the buckeyes for retaining its foliage, in good condition, well into fall. It is more tolerant of disease and insects than most buckeyes. Leaves may become quite colorful in fall; seemingly dependent on environmental conditions. Excellent for borders, as a specimen, or under shade trees.
BenefitUse Wildlife: Flowers attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
Warning: Seeds and foliage of Aesculus species are poisonous to humans if eaten. Sensitivity to a toxin varies with a personís age, weight, physical condition, and individual susceptibility. Children are most vulnerable because of their curiosity and small size. Toxicity can vary in a plant according to season, the plantís different parts, and its stage of growth; and plants can absorb toxic substances, such as herbicides, pesticides, and pollutants from the water, air, and soil.
Interesting Foliage: yes
PropagationDescription: Seeds should be planted as soon as possible after they are collected and never allowed to dry out. Softwood cuttings under mist root in fair percentages. The commercial method of propagating bottlebrush buckeye is root cuttings.
Seed Collection: Seeds dry and shrivel quickly.
Seed Treatment: Minimal cool stratification (30 days) seems beneficial.
Commercially Avail: yes
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Record Modified: 2012-07-06
Research By: TWC Staff