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Chinese Pistache

Pistachia chinensis

Other Common Names:
Chinese pistachio

Under Power Lines:
No—this tree is not approved for planting under power lines.

Street Tree Planting:
Yes—minimum planting strip width of 5 feet. If planting a street tree, you must be approved for a permit.

Description:
This is an excellent urban tree, adapting to wide variety of conditions. The Chinese pistache has dark green foliage turning to a striking red in fall and peeling bark, adding interest in every season. While this tree can start out quite misshapen, it matures into a magnificent tree.

Mature Height:
35 feet

Mature Spread:
25 feet

Leaves:
Compound dark green leaves up to 10 inches long. Fall foliage is beautiful, appearing various shades of yellow, orange, and red.

Flowers:
Small red flowers in clusters in early spring, resembling ash flowers.

Fruit:
Small inedible nuts in loose hanging clusters turn from green to red to blue.

Cultural Notes:
Widely adaptable, but prefers full sun for best growth and fall foliage. Once established, tends to be very drought tolerant.

Potential Problems:
No serious pest or disease problems, but susceptible to vertcillium wilt.

Minimum Planting Distances:

  • 15 feet from house or building
  • 3 ½ feet back from the face of the curb
  • 5 feet from underground utility lines
  • 10 feet from power poles
  • 7 ½ feet from driveways (10 feet recommended)
  • 20 feet from street lights and other existing trees
  • 30 feet from street intersections

Additional Resources