On the fence line of our garden field is this chinaberry tree. Melia azedarach is in the mahogany family. Chinaberry trees are native to India, China and Australia and were introduced to the United States in the 1700’s by a French botanist. The tree was widely planted as an ornamental in the South and, once the seed were spread by birds, it came to be considered an exotic invasive, though it is not included on our official lists.
This hand-colored engraving of Chinaberry flowers and leaves was published in a London magazine in 1807.
Right now, this tree is loaded with chinaberries and as the leaves have dropped, they are easily seen.
The pictures above were taken at dusk. Here is one taken earlier to show the golden color of the fruit.
Now where’s a good pea-shooter when you need one?
I wonder if the PVC marshmallow guns would work.
(By the way, the fruit may look like tiny apples, but it is highly toxic, so don’t inhale!)