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Aesculus






AESCULUS CALIFORNICA (_syn Pavia californica_).--California. This is

one of the handsomest species, of low, spreading habit, and blooming

freely about midsummer.



AE. GLABRA (_syn Ae. rubicunda_).--Red-flowered Horse Chestnut. North

America, 1820. If only for its neat and moderate growth, and attractive

spikes of brightly-coloured flowers, this species must be considered as

one of the handsomest and most valuable of small growing trees. Being

of moderate size, for we rarely meet with specimens of greater height

than 30 feet, and of very compact habit, it is rendered peculiarly

suitable for planting in confined spots, and where larger growing and

more straggling subjects would be out of place. It withstands soot and

smoke well, and is therefore much valued for suburban planting. The

long spikes of pretty red flowers are usually produced in great

abundance, and as they stand well above the foliage, and are of firm

lasting substance, they have a most pleasing and attractive appearance.

As there are numerous forms of the red-flowered Horse Chestnut,

differing much in the depth of flower colouring, it may be well to warn

planters, for some of these have but a faint tinge of pink overlying a

dirty yellowish-green groundwork, while the finest and most desirable

tree has the flowers of a decided pinky-red. There is a double-flowered

variety Ae. glabra flore-pleno (_syn Ae. rubicunda flore-pleno_) and

one of particular merit named Ae. rubicunda Briotii.



AE. HIPPOCASTANUM.--The Common Horse Chestnut. Asia, 1629. A fine

hardy free-flowering tree, supposed to have been introduced from Asia,

and of which there are several varieties, including a double-flowered,

a variegated, and several lobed and cut-leaved forms. The tree needs

no description, the spikes of pinky-white flowers, which are produced

in great abundance, and ample foliage rendering it one of, if not the

handsomest tree of our acquaintance. It gives a pleasing shade, and

forms an imposing and picturesque object in the landscape, especially

where the conditions of soil--a rich free loam--are provided. Ae.

Hippocastanum alba flore-pleno (the double white Horse Chestnut), has

a decidedly pyramidal habit of growth, and the flowers, which are

larger than those of the species, are perfectly double. It is a very

distinct and desirable large growing tree. Ae. Hippocastanum laciniata

and Ae. Hippocastanum digitalis are valuable for their divided leaves;

while Ae. Hippocastanum foliis variegatis has the foliage rather

irregularly variegated.



AE. PARVIFLORA (_syn Pavia macrostachya_).--Buckeye. North America,

1820. This is very distinct, and possesses feature which are shared by

no other hardy tree or shrub in cultivation. Rarely exceeding 12 feet

in height, and with a spread of often as much as 20 feet, this shrub

forms a perfect hemisphere of foliage, and which, when tipped with the

pretty fragrant flowers, renders it one of the most effective and

handsome. The foliage is large, and resembles that of the common Horse

Chestnut, while the pure white flowers, with their long projecting

stamens and red-tipped anthers, are very pretty and imposing when at

their best in July. It succeeds well in rich, dampish loam, and as a

shrub for standing alone in any conspicuous position it has, indeed,

few equals.



AE. PAVIA (_syn Pavia rubra_).--Red Buckeye. North America, 1711. A

small growing and slender-branched tree or shrub, which bears an

abundance of brownish-scarlet flowers. There are several good

varieties, two of the best being Ae. Pavia atrosanguinea, and Ae.

Pavia Whittleyana, with small, brilliant red flowers.



There are several other species, such as Ae. Pavia humilis (_syn Pavia

humilis_) of trailing habit; Ae. flava (_syn Pavia flava_) bearing

pretty yellow flowers; Ae. Pavia macrocarpa (_syn Pavia macrocarpa_)

an open-headed and graceful tree; Ae. flava discolor (_syn Pavia

discolor_); and Ae. chinensis; but they have not been found very

amenable to cultivation, except in very favoured parts of the South of

England and Ireland.






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