Content Detail

Like other lindens, big-leaved linden produces clusters of very fragrant flowers in early summer. It has an attractive form and can be used as a street tree. This species may be difficult to find in nurseries.

  • Family (English) Linden
  • Family (botanic) Tiliaceae
  • Planting site City parkway, Residential and parks, Wide median
  • Tree or plant type Tree
  • Foliage Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
  • Native locale Non-native
  • Size range Large tree (more than 40 feet)
  • Mature height 60-80 feet
  • Mature width 50-60 feet
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 5 (Northern Illinois), Zone 6 (City of Chicago), Zone 7, Zone 8
  • Soil preference Alkaline soil, Moist, well-drained soil
  • Tolerances Alkaline soil, Road salt
  • Season of interest early summer
  • Flower color and fragrance Fragrant, Yellow
  • Shape or form Pyramidal, Round
  • Growth rate Moderate
  • Transplants well Yes
  • Planting considerations May be difficult to find in nurseries
  • Wildlife Insect pollinators
  • Has cultivars Yes

Native geographic location and habitat: 

This tree is native to Europe and Asia.

Bark color and texture:

 The bark of young trees is a smooth gray, becoming ridged and furrowed with age.

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture: 

Simple, alternate leaves are heart-shaped with sharply serrated margins. The leaf size can vary from 2 to 5 inches. In the summer, leaves are dark green with varying amounts of hairiness (pubescence). The fall color is pale yellow.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size: 

Creamy yellow flowers hang in clusters of 3 to 6 in early summer. Each cluster is accompanied by a long, strap-shaped bract. The flowers are very fragrant.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions: 

The fruits are small ribbed gray nutlets, accompanied by a long strap-like bract.


Plant care: 

This species adapts to a wide range of soil conditions and does well in alkaline soil. It is fairly tolerant of urban settings.

List of pests, diseases, and tolerances:  

Aphids, Japanese beetles and linden borer are possible insect problems. Verticillium wilt is a possible fungal problem.


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