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American Bladdernut

Staphylea trifolia

Family: Staphyleaceae
Genus: Staphylea (staf-FY-lee-a) (Info)
Species: trifolia (try-FOH-lee-a) (Info)




Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade



Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Morrilton, Arkansas

Deerfield, Illinois

Edinburg, Illinois

Lisle, Illinois

Benton, Kentucky

Cross Timbers, Missouri

Saint Louis, Missouri

Frenchtown, New Jersey

Canastota, New York

Syracuse, New York

Berwyn, Pennsylvania

Downingtown, Pennsylvania

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 1, 2016, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

I have seen this native shrub in the wild; once in northern Illinois and some groups of plants along a clean stream in southeast Pennsylvania; and planted at Jenkins Arboretum in se PA. It makes an interesting shrub in a naturalistic landscape with its nice compound leaves and 3-lobed papery light tan, then later, brown inflated capsules. It gets a pale yellow fall color. It has handsome smooth twigs dotted with white lenticels and the older, red-brown to gray, scaly bark has longitudinal white stripes Bears small whitish bell-like flowers in clusters in May. Easy to grow and low maintenance, very tolerant of shade. Some simple natural pruning would make it more attractive for ornamental horticulture. Native from southeast Canada into New England to southern Minnesota, down thru east Oklah... read more


On Apr 10, 2010, garyon from Syracuse, NY wrote:

This was growing at the back of our lot when we moved in over 35 years ago. It transplants easily, and makes an attractive shrub: open and irregular when grown at the edge of a woods; compact and regular when grown in the open. Flowers, seedpods, interesting bark and leaves provide year-round interest. Spreads by underground stems and forms thickets. I have never had an insect or disease problem with it.