One of the first trees to shed its leaves but in spring the first to sprout them, creating magnificent shade. The stunning flowers are male on the top of the foliage and female on the underneath, which is why horse-chestnuts only grow on the lower part. Horse-chestnuts look like sweet-chestnuts but are inedible to humans as they are poisonous and have a bitter taste.
The Turks fed horse-chestnuts to their horses to soothe their coughs and relieve their asthma, which is where we get the name hippocastanum. Previously, the branches of this tree were used to put fish to sleep, making it easier to catch them.
Mountain deciduous forests
- Natural Habit