Tree ID by palmate leaf.

Here are four members of the Horse Chestnut family which typically have palmate leaves. These are compound leaves with 5 or more leaflets radiating out from a single point like the palm of a hand. The leaves differ in appearance sufficiently that the tree can be identified by the number of leaflets, their colour and whether they have stalks are not.  These four species are the members of the Horse Chestnut family that you are most likely to see in Britain. These species are not related to the Sweet Chestnut which belongs to a completely different family.

Tree ID by palmate leaf – photos of the palmate leaves of horse chestnut, red horse chestnut, indian horse chestnut and yellow buckeye. Click on a name in red to get more information. Click on any photo to enlarge it. To go back to the Broadleaf Leaf Key click HERE. To go back to the Tree Identification Keys click HERE

horse chestnut palmate leaf

HORSE CHESTNUT – 5 to 7 stalkless leaflets

red horse chestnut palmate leaf

RED HORSE CHESTNUT – 5 to 7 crumpled, stalkless leaflets

indian horse chestnut palmate leaf

INDIAN HORSE CHESTNUT – 5 to 9 stalked slender leaflets

yellow buckeye palmate leaf

YELLOW BUCKEYE  – 3 to 5 glossy stalked leaflets

The Horse Chestnut family Hippocastanaceae includes the genus Aesculus which has one European species, 5  Asian species and 7 North American species. The European and Asian species are known as Horse chestnuts, the North America species  as Buckeyes – this name comes from the fact that the seed is in the form of a ‘Conker’ which reminded the early settlers of the USA of a buck’s eye. The Red Horse Chestnut is a hybrid between the American Red Buckeye and the European Horse Chestnut.