This versatile tree is native to North America. Early pioneers collected its seeds and roasted them as a substitute for coffee, hence the name. Recently, a fruitless variety named 'Espresso’ has been introduced. Native Americans also used the nickel diameter round seeds as game pieces.
Fall colors usually do not impact this tree, but it will sometimes achieve an excellent yellow hue. Its reddish-brown pods hang on throughout the winter. Claims have been made that the seeds in the pods are poisonous. The leaves are bipinnately compound, comprised of 3 to 7 pairs of pinnae (leaflets).