Aesculus pavia, commonly known as red buckeye or firecracker plant, is a species of deciduous tree or large shrub that is native to the southeastern United States, including areas such as Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.
The plant typically grows up to 20 feet (6 meters) tall, but can reach up to 30 feet (9 meters) under ideal conditions. It has a spreading canopy and a dense, round crown, and its bark is gray-brown in color with shallow fissures.
The leaves of the red buckeye are palmately compound, meaning they are divided into five to seven leaflets, each of which is oblong in shape and has a serrated edge. The leaves are a bright green color and turn yellow in the fall before dropping.
In early spring, the red buckeye produces showy clusters of bright red, tubular flowers that attract hummingbirds and butterflies. These flowers are followed by fruit in the form of a large, round capsule that contains one or two shiny, brown seeds.
The red buckeye prefers moist, well-drained soils and partial shade, although it can tolerate a range of soil conditions and light levels. It is often used as an ornamental plant in gardens and parks, and its nectar-rich flowers make it a popular choice for attracting wildlife. However, it should be noted that all parts of the plant are toxic to humans and animals