Trees of Alabama and the Southeast

Lisa Samuelson, Ph.D.
School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences
Auburn University

CHINESE CHESTNUT
Castanea mollissima
Fagaceae

Leaves are simple, alternate, deciduous, elliptical to obovate, with bristle-tipped teeth and a hairy underside. Twigs are hairy with white-brown hairy buds. Bark is gray-brown and ridged. Fruit is a brown, edible nut enclosed in a spiny bur. Form is a shrub or a small tree up to 6 m (20 ft) in height. Chinese chestnut is from Asia and planted in the eastern U.S. Some mistake this tree for American chestnut but the leaves of Chinese chestnut are more leathery and hairy below.

Photographs by Mike Hogan.

To view examples, click on the thumbnail below: