Kentucky Coffeetree is a medium to large ornamental/ shade tree with delightful panicles of cream colored flowers in late Spring. It has a tropical looking structure and leaf but can have a coarse appearance in Winter, becoming more refined with age. It would make an excellent specimen for a Japanese or rock garden. It should be noted that all parts of the tree are toxic to horses and dogs, and possibly to fish in koi ponds, although early pioneers roasted the seeds for a coffee substitute, hence the name. Still, they are tolerant of a wide range of conditions and very hardy for our region and are an underused conversation piece. It is a messy tree dropping large seed pods, but the cultivar 'Espresso-JFS' is a seedless male clone more compact than the species.