|BUCKEYE NUT, HUSK REMOVED|
|BUCKEYE LOWER SPIKE|
|BUCKEYE PALMATELY COMPOUND LEAF|
Tuesday, 10:00 AM. 57 degrees F at the ferry dock, 55 on the back porch. Wind SW, calm with occasional light gusts. The sky is overcast, the humidity 86%. The barometer has begun to rise, now at 29.95". Chance of rain tonight with falling temperature tomorrow, then clearing with more moderate temperature.
We have a few Ohio buckeye trees, Aesculus glabra, in the Buckeye Family (the Hippocastanaceae) as street trees in Bayfield, and they have proven hardy here. They make nice small street trees, although some people would object to the nuts, which in past times were fine objects for little boys to throw. The "buckeye" is the state tree of Ohio, and many Ohioans carry a buckeye nut in their pocket for good luck. As a former resident of Ohio, I certainly do. It is said to have the power to cure rheumatism if so carried. I won't be drawn into that debate. As far as luck is concerned, it didn't keep me from breaking my arm; but I didn't hit my head! If anyone wants a buckeye for good luck, I have a stash of them.
The buckeye blooms nicely in the spring, an upright, compound, creamy white blossom. The leaves are palmately compound, typically with five leaflets. The horse chestnut, Aesclus hippocastaneum, a much larger tree, is in the same family and has a quite similar leaf and nut (the latter without the distinctive "eye"). There are a number of nice hardy hybrids between the two species available in the nursery trade as well. There are other worthwhile buckeye species hardy further south.
For more on the Ohio buckeye and other buckeyes, use the blog search engine to find earlier posts.