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32 Kentucky Coffeetree

(Gymnocladus dioicus )

It has a co-dominant stem. Pioneers used the coarse-grained wood in cabinetry and roasted the tree’s seeds to use as a coffee substitute. Kentucky coffeetree numbers are declining rapidly due to over-harvesting. The leaves, seeds and pulp are poisonous and are toxic to livestock, humans, and pets. (It is thought that roasting made the seeds non-toxic.) It’s a very good shade tree and generally problem free. Tree number 31 on the Central Campus Loop is the largest Kentucky coffeetree on the campus.