(16) Lime

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  • Species
    • Lime
  • Botanical Name
    • Tilia
  • Location
    • St Mary's churchyard, Ridgeway gardens
    • Grid Reference: TQ 14870, 55557
    • Latitude, Longitude: 51.287574, -0.35414646
    • What3Words: debit.pizza.wounds
  • Identification
    • Lime is a large tree that often has a lots of burrs at the base of the trunk from which masses of sprouts may emerge. The leaves are heart-shaped with pointed tips and are asymmetrical. The cream coloured flowers are very fragrant and attract bees. They are born on yellowish-green bracts that remain on the tree as the little bobble-like fruit develop. The bracts look like pale, narrow leaves but later turn brown, and along with the basal sprouts (if present), make this tree easy to identify.
  • About this species
    • The Common Lime (Tilia x europaea) is a cross between two native trees, the Large-leaved (Tilia platyphyllos) and the Small-leaved Lime (Tilia cordata). They were often planted in avenues leading to big houses and are common in streets and parks. The pale, soft wood cuts cleanly and was used by woodcarvers including Grinling Gibbons. The different species of lime hybridise freely. However, they no longer produce fertile seed but reproduce vegetatively and so cannot spread far.
  • Local information
    • There are lots of limes in the churchyard. "Linde" is the Anglo-Saxon name for lime which is preserved in many place names such as Lyndhurst and Linwood, both in the New Forest. There is another big lime tree outside Rentwood in School Lane but recent tree surgery has left it looking a bit like a loo brush! There are also lime trees in Cobham Road near the chemist, on the opposite corner with Pound Crescent, and outside 182/184 Cobham Road. Don’t park under lime trees in spring or summer as they are often infested by aphids, which rain down sticky honeydew. This characteristic has earned lime the name "traffic warden tree".

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