Horse Chestnut

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Cnó Capaill
Latin name: Aesculus hippocastanum

There are lots of horse chestnut trees in Ireland. They are native to Asia and Greece.

Do you know why they are called horse chestnuts?

Some people say it’s because the trees are as strong as a horse!

The leaves of the horse chestnut look like long, green fingers that spread out from the central stem.

White, pink or yellow flowers appear in May, but it’s not until the autumn that we start to see the chestnuts falling from the trees.

The fruit of the horse chestnut are these shiny brown chestnuts that are commonly known as ‘conkers’. They grow inside a thick, fleshy casing that has sharp little spikes on the outside to protect it.

In the autumn, lots of chestnuts can be found on the ground near horse chestnut trees. You will often see children playing the game ‘conkers’.

Do you ever played this game? If you do, be careful not to hurt your knuckles!

Exploring Trees in the Park