Small Leaf Lime on High Close tree trail

Small Leaf Lime

Considered an indicator of ancient woodland (having had continuous woodland coverage since 1600s) pollen records show the small-leaved lime was once a widespread species.

Latin name

Tilia cordata

Some facts about the Lime

This broadleaf species has distinctive heart-shaped leaves and smooth grey bark. The flowers produce a heavy, sweet scent in summer and are loved by bees. Hives near lime trees apparently produce the sweetest honey and the cleanest burning beeswax candles.

Lime trees found in the Lake District are at the northern limit of their range. Rather than relying on seeds for reproduction the lime tree can regenerate through a process called layering. Low branches bow to the ground, re-root and grow from there. The original limb dies off and a new, but genetically identical tree is established. Whole thickets or hedges of lime trees can establish in this way, and are referred to as ‘walking’ across the landscape.