The kola nut, or bitter cola, (Cola vera, Cola acuminata, Cola nitida) is a seed part from a tree from the Sterculiaceae family. The trees are native to Central and Western Africa, but are now found in the West Indies and Brazil, where they were introduced by African slaves. All three species are used as a stimulant and are prepared in the same manner. The kola tree grows to approximately 40 ft (12 m) in height, and has white to yellow flowers with spots that range from red to purple. The kola tree's leaves are 6–8 in long (15–20 cm) and the tree bears fruit that is shaped like a star. Inside the fruit, about a dozen round or square seeds can be found in a white seed shell.