Southern Brooklyn

Morning Mug: A Mimosa Tree. Mmmmm… Mimosas…


This one, I am told, was on Bedford Avenue. From the photographer:

Those are the seed packets that hang from the branches. Usually they’re straight, but they curve as they dry or ripen I guess.

Photo by Robert Fernandez

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  1. That is not a Mimosa tree, rather a Honey locust tree, Gleditsia triacanthos, a common NYC street tree.

  2. Actually, Citizen Pruner, they don’t even look like the pods of honeylocust to me (Gleditsia triacanthos). They look much more like a Gymnocladus dioica – Kentucky coffee tree – a fairly uncommon but occasional sight on NYC streets. The pods should get fuzzy soon and in the fall when the foliage turns yellow the pods will have turned a great lavender color. If given the exact location of the tree I would confirm. Back when coffee was either too expensive or not available (the Great D), these beans were roasted and used as a coffee substitute (THEY ARE TOXIC RAW!!!)

    Both photos taken at NY Botanical Garden when I studied there. The ID of the tree in these photos is unequivocal.

  3. Nah – should have looked at the leaves before I opened my big mouth. Those don’t look like Gymnocladus leaves. But the pods look more like the Kentucky coffee tree than honeylocust.

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