The leaves of the Golden Raintree are pinnately compound. They are a dark green and turn yellow in the fall. The terminal leaflet is flanked by two small leaflets, similar to many sumacs. Lateral leaflets are broadly toothed and have sinuses (inlet between lobes) halfway up the leaflet.
Twig and Bud Identification
The bark is light gray to brown, with vertical furrows that form slight ridges. The ridges are not equally sized, creating a complex bark texture.
The Golden Raintree has lantern-shaped, three-sectioned fruit. When immature, the fruits are green or yellow in color and papery. When they mature, they turn yellow-brown. The fruits are dehiscent (the capsule splits open to release the seeds inside). The fruits mature at the start of fall.
The flowers of the Golden Raintree are yellow. They are typically 1/2″ long, and they form 1 to 15 long, wide panicles. They bloom in mid summer.