(grey-)brown, later with deep longitudinal grooves
elongated, glossy dark green, serrated, 10 - 25 cm
in cream-coloured catkins, 8-13 cm long, June/July
spiky husk with 2 - 3 nuts (chestnuts)
light, nutritious, humic soil
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Large tree with an irregular crown, occurring naturally on cool, somewhat humid mountainsides in Southern and Central Europe, North Africa and parts of Asia. The crown can grow to 25 m wide. The heavy, squat, dark grey trunk twists on its axis taking the deep grooves in the bark with it. Young branches are olive-green but quickly turn reddish-brown. The elongated leaf is dark green and glossy and has a clearly serrated edge. Young leaves carry velvety hairs on the underside. It is a monoecious tree with white, fragrant male flowers occurring in bundles in ears up to 13 cm long. The female flowers are small and green and are not remarkable. The fruit is edible. The tree puts down a deep and widespread root system. Castanea sativa is an important producer of timber.