Because Charleston has always been such an easy place to grow tropical and subtropical plants and trees, many non-native species introduced over the years have flourished. One that catches the eye of many visitors to our scenic city is the Triadica Sebifera, commonly known as the Popcorn Tree. This Chinese native was said to have been introduced to America by Ben Franklin in the 1770’s, and is so common now to be considered invasive in coastal areas along the edge of marshes and creeks. But in the old historic city, the tree is still quit popular, and we can see it in many places along the route I take for my walking tours. It’s most distinctive feature is the budding of tallow-covered seeds that look just like popcorn, and which are often harvested to be worked into wreaths that are sometimes spray-painted red at Christmas time.