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Tilia tomentosa - silver lime

Native to south-east Europe and Asia Minor, silver lime is one of four European lime species. It prefers woodland with dry rich soils, where it grows into a stiffly erect smooth-trunked tree, with a regular mound-shaped crown. Flowers are in clusters of 5-10, fruits 6-8mm (ca.0.3in.) in diameter and egg-shaped, faintly ribbed. A feature special to this species is the star-shaped, grey to almost white close-growing hairiness on the lower surface of the leaves and on young shoots. In wind, the leaves flutter to reveal in turn their dark green upper and silvery under surfaces.

Silver lime is used in Europe and North America in parks and gardens, but it has been little used in Finnish cities as it would be hardy only in the very south.

Silver limes dating from the 1920s can be found at Mustila at the western end of Etelärinne (or Southern slope).


Tilia sibirica - Siberian lime (linden)

The exact scientific position of this species within the limes remains unclear, growing naturally as it does eastwards into Eurasia in continuation of the range of the European or common lime (Tilia cordata), which extends almost as far as Tomsk. According to Russian sources it is a separate species from the common lime.

Siberian lime forests differ from those of the common lime, as they grow in the wettest area of Siberia. Annual precipitation can exceed 1800mm with snow cover over 2m, which prevents the ground freezing at all. This means that the autumn leaf fall has rotted completely by spring. The trees are slender, with no branches till quite high up the trunk, but the leaves of the crown are troubled by some kind of rust, probably due to standing water. This is unlikely to be a problem in Finland due to the drier conditions.

At Mustila there are several small groups of young Siberian lime and also a small plantation, which can be found at the north-eastern edge of Pohjoisrinne (Northern Slope). They have grown well even on clay, but best in rich soil on the slopes.


Tilia platyphyllos - large leaved lime


In full flower large leaved lime is a showy fragrant tree whose range covers continental Europe. It is large, with a smooth trunk producing no suckers; the crown is round and regular. As the common name suggests, leaves are large, larger than those of common lime. Flowers are produced in fan-shaped hanging clusters of 2-5, while the fruit are often large, and more or less clearly divided into 5 hard segments.

Large leaved lime is the second most important European lime (or linden) species and commonly used in parks. In Finland it grows well as far north as Oulu. The even more commonly used Common lime (or Dutch lime, Tilia x europaea), with its rough and knobby trunk, is a cross between large leaved and little leaf limes (Tilia cordata).

There are handsome large specimens at Mustila at the western end of Pähkinärinne (Hazelnut slope) near Tammimetsä (Oak Forest), among mature ash (Fraxinus excelsior) and oak trees (Quercus robur). Together, they make an impressive grove‍‍‍‍.


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