What kind of tree is this? What is it's native habitat? Are the seeds poisonous?
Hardiness Zone: 9a
By Karin from Gilroy, CA
I suggest to take or send a picture to you county agent or places that sell trees, good luck.
Thanks for the suggestion. The place here that sells trees knows nothing. County Agent? What's that? How do I find one? Several friends and I have all looked at all the pictures in all of our tree books (5 different books!), but can't find anything with that leaf formation. Surely someone has seen it somewhere and can give me a clue??
You got my curiousity up, so I did a little searching on the Web. I think you might have an tree that is an Australian native, which would be why it wasn't in your American field guides. It looks like it might be Brachychiton discolor, or at least a tree in that family. Here is one link: http://tree-species.blogspot.com/20 ... kurrajong-brachychiton-discolor.html
The various sites I looked at indicate that there is considerable variety in the leaf shape. Do the seed pods come in clusters of 5? That would help confirm it. If my guess is correct, the seeds are reputed to be edible.
Maybe you should post your question again, but ask "Is this tree Australian -- and what is it?" That might get answers from those who live there!
Oh, and for a county agent, check the US government pages of your phone book under "Department of Agriculture."
Thanks so much for your tree link! After poking around at the site a little bit, it turns out that what we have growing here in Gilroy, CA is Brachychiton Populneus. That is an exact match! It is a relief to find that the seeds are edible as it is planted at a sports complex used by children.
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