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Aesculus hippocastanum

 
 

Horse Chestnut

Classic parkland tree with white flowers

A beautiful tree with light green palm-like leaves that emerge in spring and turn dark green in summer. Bright white flowers with yellow or red markings appear mid-spring, and then later spiny green seed cases containing large brown seeds - conkers - appear in the autumn.

Where?

A large tree so suitable for larger gardens and parks, and it will grow in full sun or partial shade.

How?

Grow in any well-drained soil.

Aesculus hippcastanum is native to Balkans - the fruit are commonly known as conkers.

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Plant details

In depth plant information

Property Value
Plant type Ornamental tree
Flower colour
White
Yellow
Foliage colour
Green
Brown
Typically available February - September
Season of interest Spring
Flowering March - May
Evergreen No
Plant height 1200 cm - 1500 cm
Plant width 800 cm - 850 cm
Fragrant flowers No
Hazardous All parts highly toxic if eaten
Attracts bees Yes
Attracts butterflies Yes
Plant height in 5 years 190 cm
Hardiness zone (?) H4

Will perform best in these conditions

Property Value
Soil type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Light exposure Full sun, Part shade
Soil drainage Well drained, Medium
Planting instructions

Water the plant in its pot thoroughly before planting – give it a good soaking. Prepare the area by digging a hole twice the size of the pot. Dig compost into the base of the hole. Position the stake in the hole, on the side of the prevailing wind and drive it into the soil, to a depth of 60cm. The stake should be a third of the height of the tree, when planted. Remove the pot and position the plant in the hole close to the stake, with the rootball about level with the surrounding soil. Refill the planting hole with a mixture of garden soil and compost, firming as you go. Use two tree ties to secure the stem to the stake. Water in well and keep well watered during the plant's first year. Check ties regularly and adjust them as the tree grows.

Planting site Cottage garden, Informal garden

Typically available

From February to September