Linden: A Bit of Botany
a little botanical information on linden trees

Linden is a deciduous tree of the Malvaceae family that grows to 20–35 m (66–115 ft) tall, with a trunk up to 2 m (7 ft) in diameter. The leaves are alternately arranged, rounded to triangular-ovate, 4–13 cm long and broad with a 2.5–4 cm petiole, green and mostly hairless above, densely white tomentose with white hairs below, and with a coarsely toothed margin.

The flowers are pale yellow, hermaphrodite, produced in cymes of three to ten in mid to late summer with a pale green subtending leafy bract; they have a strong scent and are pollinated by honeybees. The nectar however contains sugars which cannot be digested by other bees, to which the tree is somewhat toxic. The fruit is a dry nut-like drupe 8–10 mm long, downy, and slightly ribbed.

common names & nomenclature
The name linden comes from the Old English and means “made of lime wood”.

Also known as:
tilia argentea, tilia argenteum, tilia tomentosa, lime, silver lime, linden, silver linden, tilia

Linden, the softly scented soft wood tree
Linden: Where in the World
habitat and range for linden

Linden is native to southeastern Europe and southwestern Asia, from Hungary and the Balkans east to western Turkey, occurring at moderate altitudes.

Linden: Cultivation & Harvesting
considerations for growing and harvesting linden trees

Linden prefers a continental climate, growing more slowly and not producing fertile seed in areas with cool summers. Does well in a hot, dry location with sun or part shade.

Prefers a good moist loamy alkaline to neutral soil but succeeds on slightly acid soils. Grows poorly on any very dry or very wet soil.

Linden trees may be increased by seeds, grafting or layering. Seeds can be sown, as soon as they are ripe, in light, well-drained soil. Grafting is usually done to increase named varieties that don't come true from seed.

Harvest flowers when they are fully open, harvest leaves throughout the season. Each may be used fresh or dried for later use.

Store dried linden in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.