What is the difference between a chestnut tree and a horse chestnut tree?

Asked By: Vasco Zheng | Last Updated: 22nd April, 2020
Category: healthy living nutrition
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Leaves. All three trees are deciduous. The American chestnut has shiny, yellow-green leaves with curving teeth along the edges that turn yellow in the fall. The seven leaflets of the horse chestnut are larger and coarser and emerge a light green, turning dark green as they mature.

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In respect to this, how can you tell the difference between chestnuts and horse chestnuts?

The toxic, inedible horse chestnuts have a fleshy, bumpy husk with a wart-covered appearance. Both horse chestnut and edible chestnuts produce a brown nut, but edible chestnuts always have a tassel or point on the nut. The toxic horse chestnut is rounded and smooth with no point or tassel.

Secondly, can you eat horse chestnut tree? One thing we need to understand is that chestnuts are sweet and they are edible but conkers or horse chestnuts are poisonous, and they are not for eating purposes. Horse chestnuts may look very desirable to eat but it is toxic, and it can even cause paralysis.

Also to know is, what is the difference between a conker tree and a chestnut tree?

A conker is the seed of the horse chestnut tree (not the sweet chestnut tree where we get edible chestnuts from). It is a hard brown nut which is found in a prickly casing. They are called Buckeyes in the US. Conkers are non-edible and they are not related to the chestnuts and their botanical name is Castanea dentate.

What does a horse chestnut tree look like?

Mature horse chestnut trees grow to a height of around 40m and can live for up to 300 years. The bark is smooth and pinky-grey when young, which darkens and develops scaly plates with age. Twigs are hairless and stout; buds are oval, dark red, shiny and sticky.

36 Related Question Answers Found

What is Horse Chestnut good for?

Horse chestnut extract has powerful anti-inflammatory properties and may help relieve pain and inflammation caused by chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). It may also benefit other health conditions like hemorrhoids and male infertility caused by swollen veins.

What happens if you eat horse chestnut?

Consuming the nuts or leaves of horse chestnut trees causes bad colic in horses and other animals develop vomiting and abdominal pain. However, deer seem to be able to eat poisonous conkers without ill effect.

Can I eat chestnuts from the tree?

Chestnuts are part of a group consisting of about nine species of trees and shrubs in the Fagaceae family. Although the shell is very difficult to remove, chestnuts are edible. However, it is rare to eat them raw and can even be dangerous for certain people.

Are chestnuts good for you?

You should eat up to 3 ounces of chestnuts a day to maximize their benefits. Chestnuts are an excellent source of manganese, molybdenum, and copper and a good source of magnesium. However, unlike other nuts, chestnuts are a low-fat variety and do not provide the benefits of a high level of monounsaturated fat.

How can you tell if chestnuts are edible?

Another easy way to tell them apart is to look at the nut itself. Both are brown with a light-colored spot on them. However, edible chestnuts always have a tassel or point on the nut—something that your finger can feel as a point. The toxic chestnut has no point—it is smooth and roundish all over.

Do you have to soak chestnuts before roasting?

You're going to touch the shell to peel them when you eat them, so be sure to wash them properly before cooking! Some people recommend soaking your chestnuts before roasting them, which allows the meat inside to steam. I haven't found that soaking makes a big difference though, but feel free to try it out.

Can you eat raw chestnuts?

You can eat them raw, but they may cause gastrointestinal distress due to the high content of tannic acid. They're almost impossible to peel without softening the shell first, and they taste much better cooked. However, if you must try a raw chestnut, here's how to peel one.

Do squirrels eat conkers?

Though mildly poisonous, deer do seek out and eat conkers. The fact that they are hard, bitter and poisonous means that they are not meant to be eaten. Instead, in the overabundance of fruit at this time of year, they get carried away by squirrels and birds, buried for the rainy day and forgotten.

Are sweet chestnuts poisonous to dogs?

Conkers are horse chestnuts, which are different to edible chestnuts, and they're toxic. The bottom line on chestnuts is that while it's fine to feed your dog occasional treats of edible chestnuts, if your dog has a propensity to devour conkers, you should prevent them from doing so.

Do chestnuts keep spiders away?

Did you know spiders hate conkers? According to old wives' tales the creatures are repelled by chestnuts, so scattering a few in the corners of rooms and on your windowsills could help to keep spiders away.

Can dogs eat chestnuts?

So, by extension chestnuts are really good for dogs. Dogs can eat chestnuts, but you should probably consider feeding them in small portions, especially if the starch count in their diet is high.

How do I prepare chestnuts?

Prepare it
To peel fresh chestnuts, rinse, then make a nick in the skin on the flat side of each and simmer in a pan of water for 15 minutes or roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Then peel, taking care to remove both the outer shell (quite easy) as well as the inner brown membrane (trickier).

What to do with chestnuts after picking?

Here's what you do:
  1. Wait for the chestnuts to fall to the ground.
  2. Gather up all of the nuts with open burrs. (You'll definitely want gloves for this job.)
  3. Remove the nuts from the burrs. Discard any with wormholes or other signs of damage.
  4. Promptly store the chestnuts in air-tight containers and refrigerate or freeze. ?

Why are conkers called conkers?

The first recorded game of Conkers using horse chestnuts was on the Isle of Wight in 1848. The name may come from the dialect word conker, meaning "knock out" (perhaps related to French conque meaning a conch, as the game was originally played using snail shells and small bits of string.)

How do you eat a chestnut?

Method 4 Boiling Chestnuts
  1. Boil a pot of water.
  2. Cut an X into one side of two cups of chestnuts. Use a sharp knife to cut the "X" shape into the chestnuts.
  3. Boil the chestnuts for 5-10 minutes.
  4. Let the chestnuts cool.
  5. Peel the shells and the skins off the nuts.
  6. Serve.

Do squirrels eat horse chestnuts?

Squirrels eat them like crazy. They love them. Yes, they are poison to cattle & horses.