Tilia cordata


Tilia cordata small-leaved lime, occasionally littleleaf linden1 or small-leaved linden is a species of Tilia native to much of Europe, from Britain through central Fennoscandia, to central Russia, and south to central Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, the Caucasus, and western Asia In the south of its range it is restricted to high elevations23

T platyphyllos left and T cordata leaf comparison

Contents

  • 1 Description
  • 2 Ecology
  • 3 Pests and diseases
  • 4 Cultivation and uses
    • 41 Notable trees
    • 42 Hybrids
    • 43 Cultivars
    • 44 Linden flower tea
    • 45 Honey
    • 46 Linden wood
  • 5 Cultural significance
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links

Descriptionedit

Tilia cordata is a deciduous tree growing to 20–40 m 66–131 ft tall, diameter 1/3 to 1/2 the height, with a trunk up to 1 m diameter The bark is smooth and grayish when young, firm with vertical ridges and horizontal fissures when older The crown is rounded in a formal oval shape to pyramidal Branching is upright and increases in density with age4 The leaves are alternately arranged, rounded to triangular-ovate, 3–8 cm long and broad, mostly hairless unlike the related Tilia platyphyllos except for small tufts of brown hair in the leaf vein axils - the leaves are distinctively heart-shaped The buds are alternate, pointed egg shaped and have red scales It has no terminal bud4 The small yellow-green hermaphrodite flowers are produced in clusters of five to eleven in early summer with a leafy yellow-green subtending bract, have a rich, heavy scent; the trees are much visited by bees to the erect flowers which are held above the bract; this flower arrangement is distinctly different from that of the Common Lime Tilia × europaea where the flowers are held beneath the bract The fruit is a dry nut-like drupe 6–7 mm long by 4 mm broad containing one, or sometimes two, brown seeds infertile fruits are globose, downy at first becoming smooth at maturity, and unlike T platyphyllos and also T x europaea not ribbed but very thin and easily cracked open25

Ecologyedit

The trees favour good, loamy sites, but can also be found on sandy, infertile soils, and are drought resistant Dormant shoots of T cordata can resist winter frost temperatures as low as -34°C6

In Britain T cordata is considered an indicator of ancient woodland, and is becoming increasingly rare7 Owing to its rarity, a number of woods have been given SSSI status Cocklode Wood, part of the Bardney Limewoods, is the best surviving spread of medieval small leaved limes in England8 Another site is Shrawley Wood in Worcestershire9 Small-leaved lime was once regarded as holy and good for carving10

Trees in northern England were found to have established when the climate was warmer and have adapted to the cooling climate Paleobotanical analysis of tree pollen preserved in peat deposits demonstrates that T cordata was present as a woodland tree in the southern Lake District c 3100 BC11 In spite of the late migration of T cordata into the Lake District, pollen diagrams from many sites show rapid expansion so that, within a few centuries, it had become plentiful and even locally dominant in the southern valleys Maximum values for Tilia from all pollen diagrams available for the north of England show a conspicuous concentration of high values in the southern Lake District At several sites among the limestone hills on both sides of the estuary of the River Kent, the curves for Tilia, although beginning about 4800 to 4000 BC then achieve values of at least 10% within a few centuries At Witherslack values of this magnitude persist for a depth of 3 m which represents about 4000 years For much of this period Ulmus is approximately 10%, Quercus 20% and the remaining arboreal pollen is largely that of Alnus For a shorter period Tilia exceeds Quercus and reaches a maximum of 30% The Witherslack basin is about 200 m in width, so that with distance correction factors applied this indicates that the surrounding woodlands on well-drained soils contained Tilia, Quercus and Ulmus in the proportions 4 : 1 : 1 Modern mature woodland trees were estimated to have germinated between 1150 and 1300 AD, making them around 800 years old Precise age determination is impossible as heartwood at the centre disintegrates and therefore rings cannot be counted, and other methods are used12

Pests and diseasesedit

The tree is fairly disease-resistant, though a common problem is leaf scorch where planted on dry soils, however leaf scorch is not a long-term problem as the leaves are lost in the autumn Pests include Japanese beetles, aphids, lace bugs and various species of moths13

Cultivation and usesedit

15-year-old lime-tree, Haute-Savoie, France

Tilia cordata is widely grown as an ornamental tree It was much planted to form avenues in 17th and early 18th century landscape planning A famous example is Unter den Linden in Berlin It is also widely cultivated in North America as a substitute for the native Tilia americana American linden or basswood which has a larger leaf, coarser in texture; there it has been renamed "Little-leaf Linden" It is popular as both a shade tree with its dense canopy, an ornamental tree with its architectural shape and a street tree In the USA, Tilia cordata has been planted in Wellesley, MA; Modesto, CA; Chicago, IL; Indianapolis, IN; and Atlanta, GA as street trees14 In Europe, there are espaliered trees owing to the ability to survive heavy pruning Tilia cordata is an easy tree to train for bonsai when the training is not done all at once Letting the tree recoup in between sessions over a period of several months creates a healthy, good-looking miniature tree15 Prior to the advent of firearms, it was also commonly used for making shields as referenced in Beowulf

Tilia cordata survives best in a soil pH range of 50 to 8016 USDA Hardiness Zone 3-717 The tree prefers moist, well drained soil, but can survive flooding; it is not highly drought tolerant13 It does not do well in soils with high salinity18

Notable treesedit

The Najevnik linden tree Slovene: Najevska lipa, about 700 years old Tilia cordata, is the thickest tree in Slovenia It is a place of cultural events, and every June a national meeting of Slovene politicians takes place under it19

Hybridsedit

  • Common lime: T cordata readily hybridises with Tilia platyphyllos; the hybrid is commonly known as common lime, Tilia × europaea syn T × vulgaris220

Cultivarsedit

  • 'Corinthian' 'Corzam'- dense, uniform limb spacing creates a compact, pyramidal, formal shape; darker and smaller leaves; resistant to Japanese beetles17
  • 'Greenspire' - the most common, a cross between the cultivar 'Euclid' and a selection from the Boston Parks, broadly used as a street tree, survives better under difficult conditions, overall a good looking, quick growing tree17
  • 'June Bride'- significantly pyramidal habit, evenly spaced branches around a very straight central leader, glossier leaves, and 3 to 4 times as many flowers17
  • 'Winter Orange' - rich red-orange-brown stems with reddish buds, can be cut back to grow long shoot extensions An extraordinarily colored cultivar

Linden flower teaedit

Mature fruits Tiliae flos: Flowers and impurities consisting of other parts of Tilia cordata as commonly used in linden flower tea

In the countries of Central, Southern and Western Europe, linden flowers are a traditional herbal remedy made into an herbal tea called Tilleul linden flower tea21

Honeyedit

A monofloral honey is produced by bees using the trees and is considered highly valuable The young leaves can be eaten as a salad vegetable22 Often cattle graze upon them21

Linden woodedit

The white, finely-grained wood is not a structurally strong material but a classic choice for refined woodcarvings such as those by Grinling Gibbons for medieval altarpieces, such as the Altar of Veit Stoss Linden wood was the prime choice for the carvings in St Paul's Cathedral, Windsor Castle, and Chatsworth21 It is also commonly used for lightweight projects such as carved spoons, light furniture, bee hives and honeycomb frames23

Cultural significanceedit

Tilia cordata is the national tree of the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic24 The leaf of Tilia cordata is also considered a national symbol of Slovenia

Referencesedit

  1. ^ "Tilia cordata" Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database USDA Retrieved 10 December 2015 
  2. ^ a b c Rushforth, K 1999 Trees of Britain and Europe Collins ISBN 0-00-220013-9
  3. ^ Den Virtuella Floran: Tilia cordata in Swedish; with maps
  4. ^ a b Upham Smith, Alica 1969 Trees in a winter landscape New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston ISBN 978-0030818639 
  5. ^ Flora of NW Europe: Tilia cordata
  6. ^ Jensen, JS 2003 "Lime - Tilia spp" PDF EUFORGEN Technical guidelines for genetic conservation and use: 6 p 
  7. ^ Natural England internal website
  8. ^ Woodland Trust The test-tube tree'’ Broadleaf Anon Spring 2014 p7
  9. ^ Natural England Citation dated 12 May 1986
  10. ^ Woodland Trust Giant seed hunt to revitalize woods'’ Broadleaf Anon Spring 2014 p9
  11. ^ Pigott, C D January 1980 "Factors Controlling the Distribution of Tilia cordata at the Northern Limits of Its Geographical Range II History in North-West England" New Phytologist 84 1: 145–164 doi:101111/j1469-81371980tb00757x 
  12. ^ Pigott, C D May 1989 "Factors Controlling the Distribution of Tilia cordata Mill at the Northern Limits of Its Geographical Range IV Estimated Ages of the Trees" New Phytologist 112 1: 117–121 doi:101111/j1469-81371989tb00316x JSTOR 2556763 
  13. ^ a b Gilman, Edward; Watson, Dennis "Tilia cordata Littleleaf Linden" PDF Retrieved 28 February 2014 
  14. ^ Phillips, Leonard E Jr 1993 Joel Stein, ed Urban Trees: A Guide for Selection, Maintenance, and Master Planning United States of America: McGraw-Hill p 259 
  15. ^ "Bonsai Focus" Retrieved 27 February 2014 
  16. ^ "Soil pH Trees and Shrubs and what they like" PDF Retrieved 22 February 2014 
  17. ^ a b c d Dirr, Michael A 2009 Manual of Woody Landscape Plants 6th ed Champaign, IL: Stripes pp 1148–1149 ISBN 1-58874-868-5 
  18. ^ Kotuby-Amacher, Jan March 2000 "Salinity and Plant Tolerance" PDF Electronic Publishing pp 1–8 Retrieved 28 February 2014 
  19. ^ Šmid Hribar, Mateja "Najevska lipa" Najevnik Linden Tree In Šmid Hribar, Mateja; Golež, Gregor; Podjed, Dan; Kladnik, Drago; Erhartič, Bojan; Pavlin, Primož; Ines, Jerele Enciklopedija naravne in kulturne dediščine na Slovenskem – DEDI Encyclopedia of Natural and Cultural Heritage in Slovenia in Slovenian Retrieved 28 August 2013 
  20. ^ Flora of NW Europe: Tilia vulgaris
  21. ^ a b c Grieve, M "Lime Tree" Botanicalcom 
  22. ^ Vernon, J 2007 Fruits of the forest The Garden November 2007: 738 Royal Horticultural Society
  23. ^ Williams SWCD 16 February 2005 "Little leaf linden is fragrant" The Bryan Times p 11 Retrieved 28 February 2014 
  24. ^ Aberystwyth University campus walks tree directory PDF Aberystwyth University sports centre p 9 Retrieved 2011-08-14 

External linksedit

  • Tilia cordata - distribution map, genetic conservation units and related resources European Forest Genetic Resources Programme EUFORGEN


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