Littleleaf Linden, Tilia cordata is a really nicely shaped tree.
As a young tree it is pyramidal and is more rounded pyramidal in maturity. We have one in the Learning Garden and it is near a Linden or Basswood, Tilia Americana. It was interesting comparing the two. The biggest difference was in the size of the leaf.
The Basswood is a younger tree and you can see the smooth bark of a young linden. The bark is narrowly ridged and gray to brown in color as it ages.
The flowers are located on a winged leafy bract, a very noticeable characteristic.
Here is the Littleleaf –
Here is the Basswood –
Both leaves are asymmetrical.
Michael Dirr says that the Littleleaf Linden does not do well in warmer climates. The ones I photographed by the dentist office are a bit stressed while the one in the Learning Garden is shaded a bit and in a natural setting, less concrete.
Spring flowers are fragrant and bees are abundant when flowers are in bloom. This tree is a dense shade tree and is well suited for home landscapes. The zones best suited for the Tilia cordata are 3 to 7. The Basswood is better suited for warmer climates, ranging zones 2-8 (9). Littleleaf Lindens average about 50 feet tall at maturity but can grow to heights of 80- 90. The Basswood grows to about 70 feet tall.
Fall color with both of these Tilia is not very exciting….a dirty yellow to brown in color. More information on the Basswood can be found at UCONN, Missouri Plants, and the Forestry Service, which contradicts some of the range information. Additional information for the Littleleaf Linden located at UCONN, NCState, and an assessment of the tree in the landscape by Ohio State.
After visiting Les' garden and trying to figure out if his was a Littleleaf Linden or a Basswood I did some more research. The LLL fruit is ribbed with 4 ridges and the BW is unribbed, LLL twigs and buds are green/brown and the BW twigs are green/red or gray and the buds are usually red. Every plant profile I reread has the LLL leaf distinctly smaller than the BW. Could the tree at the Botanical Garden be mismarked? Stranger things have happened.Be sure to click on the pictures for more detail.
|From swamp chestnut oak swamp white oak Learning Garden|
Next week's tree is Bougainvillea Golden Rain Tree, Koelreuteria bipinnata