Prairie Torch® Hybrid Buckeye -- Aesculus x 'Bergeson' (RFM-35)



A very winter-hardy hybrid buckeye was selected in northwestern Minnesota. Introduced by North Dakota State University in collaboration with Bergeson Nursery, Fertile, MN. Parentage is unknown. In NDSU trials, it grew faster than most buckeye accessions for the first 10 - 15 years. This cultivar is far superior in quality to most seedlings of Ohio Buckeye - Aesculus glabra.


USDA hardiness zone 3-7

Mature Size:

Height: 30'
Spread: 30'

Form (Shape):

Dense, globose form. With age it broadens, becoming more mushroom-shaped.

Growth Rate:



Summer: Emerging light green in spring and turning dark green in summer, typical 7 palmately compound leaflets. 

Autumn: Brilliant orange-red fall color.


Medium-Coarse in leaf, Coarse in winter.


Yellow-green 4-7” long panicles in early to mid-May.


Spiny golf ball-sized capsules. Attracts wildlife, especially squirrels.

Light Preferences:

Full sun to part shade.

Soil Preferences:

Moist, well-drained soils, soil pH adaptable.


Grafting (including budding) and softwood cuttings.

Ornamental Attributes:

High-quality foliage that inclines downward in an umbrella-like fashion. This characteristic lends a tropical touch to the tree’s appearance. Consistent brilliant fall color sets this selection apart from the species, which is notoriously inconsistent ranging from green to maroon.

Landscape Attributes:

Prairie Torch® Hybrid Buckeye is a dense deciduous tree with a slightly weeping globose form. It is recommended as a boulevard, small shade, or landscape specimen tree.


Buckeyes are drought-sensitive and prone to leaf scorch during hot, dry weather. Provide adequate water during these times.  Adding a 3-4” layer of mulch is recommended. Prairie Torch® Hybrid Buckeye has shown resistance to leaf scorch.

Patent Status:

U.S. Trademark registered Prairie Torch®

Canadian Trademark registered

Licensing Status:

This cultivar is available for non-exclusive licensing.


Download the PDF Datasheet (PDF, 363.20 KB)

Inquire about this technology >