Kentucky Coffee Tree
- Main interest:
- yellow leaves in the fall, distinctive seed pods, tolerant to drought and pollution, low maintenance, native
- full sun
- Soil humidity:
- dry to wet soil; well drained
- Flower colour:
- whitish green
- Mildly fragrant
- Flowering period:
- May to June
- bluish green
- USDA Hardiness:
- zone 4a: -34.5 °C (-30 °F) View Zone Map
- Mature height & width (max.):
- height: 80 ft (24 m) width: 50 ft (15 m)
- specimen, urban tree, shade tree, rain garden
Kentucky Coffee Tree is a large, native, deciduous tree species. The trunk has rough, scaley brown bark. The large, bipinnately compound leaves are bluish green in the summer and a stunning yellow in the fall.
Gymnocladus dioicus is a dioecious species. Male and female flowers occur on separate individuals. The greenish white female flowers are fragrant and when fertilized, produce flat reddish brown seed pods. Native Americans used to roast the seeds and use them to produce a coffee like beverage. While edible when roasted, these seeds are very toxic when consumed raw. Only female trees produce the seed pods. Kentucky Coffee Tree is a large, slow-growing tree species, able to grow over 60-80 ft tall.
Makes an excellent shade tree. Kentucky Coffee Tree is slow growing, easy to grow and low maintenance. It is extremely tolerant to drought as well as wet soil, and urban pollution (heavy clay soil should be avoided). Commonly used in urban and residential areas. This is a threatened species in Ontario.
$15.99 - $39.99
Also known as: Coffee Tree, Coffeetree, Kentucky coffeetree, Kentucky Mahogany, American Coffee Berry