Aesculus pavia L.

Red Buckeye


CC = 7
CW = 3
MOC = 23

© SRTurner

Family - Sapindaceae

Habit - Shrub or small tree, to 5 m.

Stems - Woody, to 5 m. Tree-like with single trunk or shrub-like with multiple stems.

Aesculus_pavia_stem.jpg Young stem.

© SRTurner

Aesculus_pavia_stem2.jpg Older stem.

© SRTurner

Leaves - Opposite, petiolate, palmately compound with 5 leaflets. Leaflets oblanceolate to obovate, acute to acuminate, toothed, glabrous to sparsely above and below. Petioles reddish, glabrous to somewhat pubescent.

Aesculus_pavia_leaves1.jpg Leaves.

© SRTurner

Aesculus_pavia_leaflet1.jpg Leaflet bases, adaxial.

© SRTurner

Aesculus_pavia_leaflet2.jpg Leaflet abaxial.

© SRTurner

Inflorescences - Terminal panicles to 25cm tall.

Aesculus_pavia_inflorescence2.jpg Inflorescence.

© SRTurner

Flowers - Corolla red. Petals 4, unequal. Styles long protruding from corolla. Stamens included or slightly longer than corolla.

Aesculus_pavia_flower.jpg Lateral view of flower.

© DETenaglia


© DETenaglia

Aesculus_pavia_flower3.jpg Frontal view of flower.

© SRTurner

Fruits - Smooth, punctate, slightly longer than broad, to 5cm in diameter.

Aesculus_pavia_fruits.jpg Fruit.

© SRTurner

Flowering - April - June.

Habitat - Slopes, rich woods, streambanks, also cultivated.

Origin - Native to the southeastern U.S.

Lookalikes - When flowering, none. Vegetatively resembles A. glabra.

Other info. - This is a striking plant and one of the first "trees" to bloom in spring. Its occurrence in Missouri is mostly within the southeastern region, though it is frequently cultivated and sometimes found elsewhere in the state. Its U.S. range is mostly within the southeastern quadrant of the country. The plant is simple to identify in the field from its red flowers and palmately divided leaves. It is toxic if eaten.

Photographs taken off Lee Rd 54, Lee County, AL., 3-23-05 (DETenaglia); also at Sun Conservation Area, Butler County, MO, 05-21-2014, Mingo NWR, Stoddard County, MO, 04-16-2015, southeast of Benton, Scott County, MO, 10-04-2017, and Millstream Gardens Conservation Area, Madison County, MO, 4-28-2020 (SRTurner).