Best known for the production of ‘conkers’. The spiky seed shell contains a shiny nut. The nut is threaded on to a string and the opponents conker is flicked until one breaks leaving a winner. Some conkers are treated with vinegar of other tricks to harden them for competition.
Due to chemical saponin in the nut they have historically been used for washing clothes.
Spiders and other creatures are frightened off by the saponins
The flowers are quite striking and form attractive pyramid shapes, referred to as ‘candles’, up in the branches.
Trees can be over 100 feet tall and long lived up to 250 years.
The palmate leaves can be disfigured by leaf miner moths.
They provide heavy shade and little will grow directly beneath them.
Germination and initial growth can be quite rapid.
Aesculus hippocastanum or Horse-Chestnut flowers are white but there is a red hybrid Aesculus carnea