Kola Nut, an edible nut of the kola tree, an evergreen native to Africa. (Botanically, it is not a true nut, but rather the kernel of a fruit called a drupe.) The nut is creamy white and about one inch (2.5 cm) long. It contains caffeine and kolanin and is chewed by Africans for its stimulating effect. The nuts are also used to flavor soft drinks. The kola tree reaches a height of 60 feet (18 m). It bears leathery, oval-shaped leaves and small yellow flowers. There are two main species of kola trees cultivated for their nuts, one found in Africa and the other in South America and Jamaica.

The kola tree of Africa is Cola acuminata; the one of South America and Jamaica, C. nitida. Both belong to the family Sterculiaceae.

Kola nutsKola nuts are the bitter, caffeine-containing seeds of kola trees.