Family: Fabaceae

Scientific Name: Gymnocladus dioica

Common Name: Kentucky Coffee Tree


Kentucky Coffee Tree (Gymnocladus dioica) is a very large tree with large bipinnately compound leaves. Seeds were used by early settlers to make coffee.

Plant TypeTrees Deciduous
Hardiness Zone3b-8
Soil & Siteaverage
Flowersdioecious, male and female trees, florets borne on pinnacles
Fruitflat, wide, bean-like pod
Leavesalternate, bipinnately compound leaves, may have up to 100 leaflets, can reach 36" by 24", fall yellow color erratic
Dimensions60 feet tall spreading up to 50 (can get larger), broad ovate forms narrow obovate crown
Propagationseeds, germination benefits from stratification
Misc FactsLeaves and seeds can be poisonous to animals and plants also are very messy. AKA: Knicker Tree, Stump Tree, Luck Bean, Chicot
Author's NotesWhen I brought a Kentucky Coffee tree leaf into class, the students were amazed at how large the leaf was.
Notes & Reference#01-Manual of Woody Landscape Plants (Michael Dirr), #93-North American Landscape Trees (Arthur Lee Jacobson)
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