Buckeye, a forest tree related to the maple and box elder. It reaches a height of 30 feet (9 m) or more. The compound leaf resembles that of the chestnut. The fruit is a leathery pod containing a large nutlike seed with a shiny coat and a round, pale scar. Its resemblance to the soft, lustrous eye of the Virginia deer gives the tree its name.
The buckeye is found in woods from the Ohio Valley southward. In addition to the Ohio buckeye there are others, such as the red buckeye, a shrub or small tree sometimes growing to 25 feet (8 m), and the yellow, or sweet, buckeye, which reaches a height of 70 to 90 feet (21-27 m). The horse chestnut is a European buckeye.
The Ohio buckeye is Aesculus glabra; red, A. pavia; yellow, A. octandra; horse chestnut, A. hippocastanum. Buckeyes belong to the family Hippocastanaceae.