The Fragrant Linden Tree (Tilia)

June 23, 2012

IF ONLY YOU COULD VISIT ME JUST NOW, while my Linden tree is in bloom. From late June through mid-July, this Tilia dangles creamy-yellow, star-shaped flowers beneath its pale-green branches. The flowers are not conspicuous. But they don’t have to be! They announce their presence by exhaling the sweetest, most powerful perfume known to the plant kingdom.

The scent — a blend of honey and lemon peel — is far-reaching. On a warm, still day, it envelopes all four acres here. In the evening it drifts indoors through open windows. Of course the bees love the fragrance as much as I do; the tree buzzes with life throughout its bloom period.

I’ve read that Lindens can live for 1000 years. This means mine (above, tree with silver-toned leaves) is probably a youngster of about 100 years old. It stands about 80 feet tall and 40 feet wide. Believe me, it was worth buying this old, dilapidated manse just to inherit this great tree.

If you already have a mature Tilia on your property, or one in a public park near you, by all means cherish it. The perfume will enchant you, and its shade, on a hot summer afternoon, will soothe you.

Varieties
Tilia americana. Not for a small suburban yard, but delightful in a park (or a park-size yard), this “Basswood” matures at 60-80 feet, with a 20-40 spread in deep, fertile, moist soil. Hardy zones 3-7.

Tilia cordata or “Littleleaf Linden”. This one will tolerate a wide range of soils, and even winter salt, making it ideal for sidewalk planting. That is, until it achieves its potential 30-50 feet height, and 20-30 foot width. Pyramidal in shape; hardy in zones 3-8.

Tilia tomentosa This might be the variety I have. Leaves are heart-shaped with silvery undersides, giving the tree the common name “Silver Linden.” Grows 80-100 feet tall, and 40 feet wide. Mine flourishes in zone 5-b, although the “authorities” say it is hardy in zones 6-9.

Tilia platyphyllos. You will see this imposing, “Bigleaf Linden” lining formal boulevards and grand allees throughout Europe. Despite the nickname, its leaves are no bigger than other lindens, but its stems are covered in long hairs. Hardy in zones 5-8.

In the comments, please let me know if you have ever smelled the blossoms of the Linden tree. Intoxicating, yes?

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Related Posts:
Plant Propagation: Layering
A Peach of a Shrub: Flowering Quince ‘Cameo’
My First “Open Day” & a Brief Tour

Comments

  1. Yolanda says:

    This is the tree that has everyone looking around, wondering where the great scent is coming from. The scent is intoxicating.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Never have, but added this to my list of things to one day enjoy…now to research an area where they grow and plan a future trip during bloom time…thanks for such an interesting site…enjoy all of your writings and recipes.

  3. Have never smelled one that I know of. It sounds like the sort of scent you'd want to smell before deciding whether to plant one. Have you ever come across anyone who didn't like the smell or found it overpowering?

  4. Anonymous — Glad you enjoy this site. Hopefully you can find an in-bloom Linden not far from you. I know they are plentiful in the Northeast, and also in England. A friend in London called this morning and told me all the Lindens are in bloom there now, too.

    BBI — While the scent is heavy, it is not cloying. I find it infinitely inhalable!

  5. Vicki says:

    BBI, the smell of the Linden is not overpowering. It is memorable and lovely. I particularly favor the Linden as my formal first name is none other than Linden. I was named after the tree my mother so loved!

  6. Wow, how lucky and cool to be named for a beautiful tree!

  7. Mary Ann in Rochester NY says:

    Alas, what scent memories this brings, my beloved
    tilia cordata had to be taken down last spring
    due to storm damage and too close to house.
    How I miss her! I put her in as a small slip
    forty years before and I still mourn her passing.
    Also miss the Goldfinches that dined on the
    flowers! How fortunate you are.

  8. SDN says:

    I have eight of them in a small area (silver lindens) and my whole house smells divine, but I have to have them pruned every few years and wonder if eventually some or most will have to go if pruning can't keep them about the size they are now. They are about 15 years old and growing quite a bit each year.

  9. Mary Ann in Rochester – welcome. You can't imagine how badly I feel for both you and your tree. Forty years is a long history together. I wonder if you remember how many years before your cordata bloomed?

    SDN – Welcome. Wow – eight silver lindens! Did you plant them yourself? I'd consult with a tree expert regarding pruning (if you haven't already). Not sure how long you can keep their growth in check without jeopardizing health. They are powerful growers. Same question for you as Mary Ann — how many years before your trees started to bloom?

  10. Rachel says:

    I have a little leaf linden that I planted as a whip 4 years ago. it is now almost as tall as my 2 story house! It grows very quickly but I wasn’t sure it was going to make it because we kept having to prop it up… it was flopping right over into the street! Anyway, it is growing relatively straight now and I’m anxious to experience this scent. I would love to know when to expect it!

  11. Rachel – That’s some fast-growing Linden you have! Blooms and perfume — for me, anyway — always occur in July.

  12. Susan says:

    The scent is indeed intoxicating! I live in lower Manhattan, in New York City, and there is a small park (called Corlear’s Hook Park), on which the paths are lined with about 20 or so Silver Linden trees. This time of year the scent “calls” to me, from blocks away, I just returned from my walk, and wanted to read about these wonderful trees. They’re so shady, and this park is just the place to visit on a hot day, as the benches are underneath them. Gorgeous too, and I’m so glad to learn they live so long.

  13. Susan – Nice to meet you. It is indeed a scent that “beckons.” You are lucky to live near Corlear’s Hook Park.

  14. Claire says:

    Thank you for the information on the Linden tree. Every day when walking my dogs I walk past these trees and wondered what kind they were. Beautiful soft sweet smell.
    Claire from Illinois.

  15. mary ann says:

    She was 10 yrs. old when first blossomed and we were in love ever after
    love the pics, learned life lesson, never plant too near the house
    love your site, great info, and recipes, vinegar weed control working!!

  16. Jess says:

    Linden is one of my favorite tree medicines. The dried flowers grace my tea most days and calm my nerves in a soft, gentle way.

  17. Cleo says:

    There was a road near where we lived in London that was lined with Linden trees and we would go there to play in the summer just to enjoy that incredible scent.

  18. zinnia says:

    Thank you so much for posting this! We just got back from the south of France. While walking around the lovely town of Ilse de la Sourge in Province, my husband and I could not figure out where the intoxicating fragrance was coming from that filled the air. Then we crossed a small plaza shaded by enormous trees filled with tiny yellow flowers. We could not believe our noses! Never having seen a Linden tree, I took a close-up picture of the flowers to take to my local nursery for identification. Now I know! You are the best, Kevin! I love your website because it is filled with so much interesting information. Don’t ever stop!

  19. Erin Asciola says:

    I live in Bristol RI, and have also wondered what the beautiful, sweet smelling trees all over town were called. Shame on me! Bristol is famous for it’s lindens, and we even have a mansion in the center of town called “Linden Place”!

  20. george goetz says:

    I have two of these trees and if I could the japanese beatles off of it they would be great.

  21. Grazyna says:

    SDN – look into pollarding your linden trees. It’s very popular method of pruning linden trees in Europe so they can be grown and enjoyed in the urban setting. Love those trees and planted tiny whips on our property. Used to have one that was probably more than 100 years old in the old house. It was great to sit under it and enjoy the scent and music of all kinds of insects feasting on the nectar. Dried flowers make nice, calming tea.

  22. Wolfgang says:

    Great info about the Linden. I have a miniature one planted in my garden I will transfer into a bonsai pot next year. The potential flowering cycle is an extra to look forward to.

  23. Lorra says:

    The German-American Klub of Indianapolis has a brick walk around one side that is fully shaded by Linden trees, thus one walks ‘unter der Linden”. The fragrance is usually mistaken as being from the flowers in the shady garden.

  24. ingrid says:

    there is an ancient Linden tree along the brook near the house. The sweet aroma when it is in bloom is truly intoxicating, but most amazing is the humming of what must be a million bees feasting on the nectar. My grandmother would dry the blossoms for tea in the winter time. Ah, memories. BTW I live in Austria and enjoy your blog tremendously. You make me have more plans than I have time for ;)

  25. Soymoon says:

    We also have an eighty year old linden in our yard. It shades our house most of the day. Glad to hear they live a long time as we don’t have air conditioning and would miss the shade.
    I understand the flowers make a wonderful tea. Too bad they are too high to harvest. Truly fragrant and inviting.

  26. LJ says:

    Last year I bought some honey from a local husband and wife, and one of the varieties they offered was a linden flower honey. They recommended the linden honey for herbal teas, and they were so right! Fabulous, unlike any other honey I’ve tried. I’m sure there are lindens somewhere in the city nearby where I live; none out here near me in my town, or I’d have smelled them out by now. Thanks, Kevin!

  27. Donna B. says:

    Kevin, thank you SO much for unknowingly identifying a mystery tree for me!
    I was recently at a convention center; noticing a sweet smell in the air, I looked up into the tree I was sitting under. Boom. Tons of bee’s, little star-shaped flowers, and the air was heavy with a deep honey smell.
    I took some pictures of the leaves/flowers to try to identify it with my MIL’s best reference: her Dirr’s Hardy Tree’s and Shrubs! … No luck.
    And now in just ONE post I now know what this beautiful mystery tree is!!! Maybe when we try to ‘replace’ a dying maple in our backyard, I’ll plant the ‘Littleleaf Linden” in it’s place. I’m all for that intoxicating scent! ♥

  28. Back in the 1970′s I was the main actor in a project to introduce the natural enemies of the Linden aphid in the San Francisco Bay area. This solved the pest problem on the large lindens growing along the streets and other areas. This eliminated the decades long pesticide applications. I would like to know of people/places where the aphid remains a problem. Reports written about this project are on my webside but it is now going through some major changes. Check back or email me directly if interested. regards, bill

  29. Tricia B. says:

    When I was in graduate school back in the late ’60s, a linden grew outside our seminar room in Sprague Hall at Yale. How hard it was to keep one’s mind on Byzantine chant or medieval music notation with that heavenly perfume drifting through the open windows.

  30. Glynnis N says:

    A couple of years ago, my friend and I agreed to meet for lunch in a park near our work. We were wondering around scouting out a picnic table as we walked under the canopy of this enormous tree. We both stopped, looked at eachother, held out our palms and breathed deep and slow. It was transcendental. We drug a picnic table under that tree, and ate our delicious hawaiian bar-b-que takeout, as little pale flowers would flutter down around us. A heavenly memory.

  31. Joy says:

    I love my linden, too! I suspect it was planted when the house was built here in southeast Pennsylvania in 1954. The heady fragrance more than compensates for the ‘mess’ when the buds drop & the myriad little fruits that follow. Autumn is not the beauty season for the linden, but when the brown leaves fall, the tree’s graceful fountain shape is revealed.

  32. Nanou says:

    I grew up in France, practically under the oldest Linden tree in Europe; it is close to a thousand years old. The tree hosted all my dreams from childhood to my early twenties. It has sheltered my laughters and my sorrows. For years and years, under the shade of its large extended branches my village hosted yearly events, starting with medieval feasts in the 1400s to the modern “bals du 14 juillet” and wine festivals. When i now dream about our Linden tree from so far away, i smile as i still capture the fragrance that swirled me around the danse floor. From so far away, I honored its majestic loyalty as our Tilleul still sweetens the days and nights of those who come to sit quietly underneath, or the laughters of the kids who encircle its trunk… like i did with my friends when a child….

  33. Tammy says:

    Anyone know if a Linden will thrive in the Chicagoland area? I am in Wheaton. We recently lost a less desirable tree to major storms and maybe this would be a lovely replacement. Where does one find these “slips” you speak of?

    Kevin – I love your blog. You are an amazing photographer and I would dearly love to have a 1/4 of your gardens. Keep writing – you are really really good. Furthermore, with all the wonderfully decadent desserts you post about making, how do you stay trim? Peace -

  34. Soymoon says:

    TAMMY,

    Lindens are native trees in the mid-west. It would do quite well in Illinois.
    Easily available at garden centers. Tilia is the latin name.
    Read above to decide which species is best for your yard.

    Have fun!

  35. darrell says:

    Hi folks,

    We have a large, old Linden which shades our summer house in Nova Scotia, Canada. It is about 4 – 5 feet in diameter at the base and buzzes with small bees while in bloom. Now, in early fall it seems that it is full of what appear to be hornets, rather than bees, but I may be mistaken. If this is common, or if anyone could enlighten me as to whether they are a different type of bee, etc I would appreciate it. I could email a picture of the tree if that would help.
    Thanks, Darrell

  36. Todd says:

    Thanks for highlighting the beauty of these trees and their famed perfume. We had many streets and a small river quay embankment lined with linden (Lipa) trees in the small town of Sveti Nikole, Macedonia. When they were in bloom in June that sweet honey lemony fragrance was simply unforgettable. After heavy rains there’d be perfumed rivers of linden tree tea running down the streets, with puddles of brewed linden tea – a truly bewildering sight. It is indeed a favourite tea Чај од Липа (Lipa Chai) made from the picked florets of the fragrant linden tree, then dried. An amazing gift of nature. So thankful.

  37. Alice Shechter says:

    We have these on our Brooklyn block. I was finally driven to find out its name. thank you! This tree and its astonishing fragrance gives me a great deal of pleasure…..

  38. Angelina says:

    The fragrance is soothing and intoxicating! I am fortunate enough to have not only one, but TWO of these trees on the side of my house on my property. Not so nice because holy bees and japanese beetles! However, the smell is amazing! Ive lived in my house for 2 years and to be honest, I didnt know how I felt about these two trees at first! They are HUGE and tale
    Over the ENTIRE side of my house with shade and take up space. The last 2 years have been rather dry so they havent bloomed to their full potential until this year! I walked up my sidewalk from my driveway the other day and steppes right into a cloud of the most amazing and pleasant scent. I started doing some research and low and behold…they are Linden Trees! Tilia Americana to be exact. Im allergic to bees so that scares me, but their scent is worth it all! I also have seen that it had medicinal purposes as well!

  39. Bruni Haydl says:

    My sister gave me a Little Leaf Linden as a housewarming gift. Best present I ever got. Love, love, love that tree. When in bloom it is an absolute magnet for bees, bumblebees and other insects. Even had a lovely Zebra Swallowtail nectaring on it. the other evening. The intoxicating but not heavy aroma is like nothing else. I remember having tea made from dried blossoms as a child in Europe. A friend from Kentucky told me that these trees grow in their woods and that “linn honey” was a favorite for that area. Doesn’t that sound delicious?

  40. Madeleine Lewis says:

    Lucky you, Kevin. We had these in our garden growing up in the British Isles. To this day, I cross the street to walk under when I see one in bloom. Closer to home there is one planted in the old Marble Cemetery on 2nd Street in NYC. It’s in bloom now, heaven!

  41. Linda J says:

    Thank you Kevin for more information on the Linden Tree.
    We are in Central Iowa and had two crabapple trees out in front of our house. We lost one
    last year in a storm and would like to replace it (believe the other one won’t last much longer either). We live on a curve so need to keep the tree pruned so drivers can see around the curve. Would the Linden Tree branches be okay to be trimmed for view? We live a few miles from a B & B (Lynnville, IA) that is named The Linden House and it has Linden trees beside it. I love the fragrance from the trees and would love to have one close and now hearing about the tea makes me want it more.
    Thanks for your newsletter – it is my first go to on Sunday mornings even before the newspaper.

  42. Kathy Fober says:

    I love my Linden BUT it is a magnet for Japanese Beetles and while I am enjoying the wonderful fragrance I know the beetles are just emerging and will soon be skeletonizing the leaves. Last year I called the leaves my new mulch. Thankfully this won’t kill the tree. It’s just very unsightly. I would never consider removing the tree for this reason. It is so valuable for attracting pollinators and supporting the bee population. Plus that heavenly fragrance.

  43. Linda C says:

    Love your discussion about this favorite tree of mine. I remember seeing one at the Philadelphia Zoo (where trees were labeled) about twenty five years ago. Although it wasn’t in bloom, I admired the shape, the bark, and the unusual heart-shaped leaves. We planted one on the southeast side of our front yard and it is about twenty five feet tall now; it provides the best shade and guests will often look around to try and identify the source of the heavenly aroma. So difficult to describe the scent; it is just a light clean fragrance and even enjoyed by a friend who can’t tolerate perfume. I actually had no idea how big they get or how long they live, and now know it probably is too close to the house, but, oh well, as the kids say . Have had ours pruned several times and hope to enjoy it for many more years before it outgrows it’s prized position in our yard. Just have to say how much I look forward to your blogs, Kevin. You are amazing and have the greatest sense of humor (and style, I might add.)

  44. Marlyn says:

    We planted a Little Leaf Linden 19 years ago on the north end of a flower bed in the front yard. It had grown into a beautiful spire shaped tree and blocked most of our view of the house across the street. It also was getting to the size to provide shade underneath for a few chairs to enjoy the shade. I loved the scent it produced from the flowers. One negative thing about the tree is that there were always sticks on the ground to be picked up before mowing could take place, even if there had not been lots of wind. A terrible storm with high winds ended it’s life, two summers ago. It broke off at the base, just like you cut it off at ground level with a knife. It fell across our driveway, miraculously in between a garden bed and a trellis of honeysuckle. I still miss that tree.

  45. Ava lansbery says:

    Would you consider these trees “understory” trees, like dog wood or would you plant them out in the open field? I think they would be marginal in my zone but would like to try.

  46. Joy says:

    I suspect that the linden shading the west end of the house was planted in 1954 when the house was built. Heavenly perfume in June, deep shade all summer, and that graceful fountain shape revealed in winter. I can forgive its lackluster autumn; leaves turn brown & drop with no color at all.

  47. Elfrieda says:

    This is a little long, but I am so mad …….
    Dead Bees: 25,000 Found In Car Park Amid Probe

    They were discovered clustering under dozens of blooming European linden trees in Wilsonville, south-west of Portland.

    Experts believe it could be a poisonous species of the tree that caused them to die, or they may have been poisoned by insecticides.

    Most were gold-and-black bumble bees but honey bees and some ladybirds were also found dead.

    Early investigations suggest the trees were recently sprayed with an insecticide known to be toxic to bees.

    One official said experts will be looking at a pesticide called Safari that apparently was applied in the area last Saturday to control aphids such as greenflies.

    Safari is part of a family of pesticides called neonicotinoids that are considered acutely toxic to pollinators.

    Dan Hilburn, plant programmes director at the state Agriculture Department, visited the car park and confirmed “thousands of dead bees”, adding: “I’ve never seen anything like that before”.

    He went on: “Honey bees and bumble bees were arriving as we were there, and bees are still dying.”

    Bees play a crucial role in pollinating berries, flowers and other plants.

    Conservationists Mace Vaughan and Rich Hatfield have been at the scene, filling test tubes with samples to take back to a laboratory.

    There, they will try to confirm either theory for the bees’ sudden deaths.

    “When I was here on Monday, it was even more dramatic than it is today,” Mr Hatfield told KOIN-TV. “There were bees raining out of trees.”

    Mr Vaughan said European linden trees are often treated with insecticides because of the aphids that “rain down” nectar from the trees.

    But there is also a chance that it is not insecticide at all. Mr Vaughan took pollen samples and will test the buds and flowers from the trees.

    “We can’t say for sure that it is something that they put on the tree,” Mr Hatfield said, “because these trees are European Linden trees, which have been known to be toxic to bees.”

  48. Elfrieda says:

    I thought I had just posted this; it is a little long, but I just recently received this as an email — makes me so mad !
    Dead Bees: 25,000 Found In Car Park Amid Probe

    They were discovered clustering under dozens of blooming European linden trees in Wilsonville, south-west of Portland.

    Experts believe it could be a poisonous species of the tree that caused them to die, or they may have been poisoned by insecticides.

    Most were gold-and-black bumble bees but honey bees and some ladybirds were also found dead.

    Early investigations suggest the trees were recently sprayed with an insecticide known to be toxic to bees.

    One official said experts will be looking at a pesticide called Safari that apparently was applied in the area last Saturday to control aphids such as greenflies.

    Safari is part of a family of pesticides called neonicotinoids that are considered acutely toxic to pollinators.

    Dan Hilburn, plant programmes director at the state Agriculture Department, visited the car park and confirmed “thousands of dead bees”, adding: “I’ve never seen anything like that before”.

    He went on: “Honey bees and bumble bees were arriving as we were there, and bees are still dying.”

    Bees play a crucial role in pollinating berries, flowers and other plants.

    Conservationists Mace Vaughan and Rich Hatfield have been at the scene, filling test tubes with samples to take back to a laboratory.

    There, they will try to confirm either theory for the bees’ sudden deaths.

    “When I was here on Monday, it was even more dramatic than it is today,” Mr Hatfield told KOIN-TV. “There were bees raining out of trees.”

    Mr Vaughan said European linden trees are often treated with insecticides because of the aphids that “rain down” nectar from the trees.

    But there is also a chance that it is not insecticide at all. Mr Vaughan took pollen samples and will test the buds and flowers from the trees.

    “We can’t say for sure that it is something that they put on the tree,” Mr Hatfield said, “because these trees are European Linden trees, which have been known to be toxic to bees.”

  49. Elfrieda says:

    My apologies — apparently it posted twice — sorry.

  50. Coolngrl says:

    Kevin-we love lindens here in the northwest! I use the pure essential oil of the linden flower when I make soap or lotion for my family. We all love the scent! Lindens grow well here too.

  51. Scott Trudell says:

    I don’t have a linden tree on my property, but Madison has lots of them all around town which perfume the air. One of my favorite bath soaps is a triple milled French soap scented with linden blossom!

  52. eunice says:

    I have what I think is a Linden. It is about 20 years old. As of this year it has not bloomed , I haven’t smelled the beautiful perfume of the Linden. Maybe my tree is not Linden.

    can you

  53. eunice says:

    I have what I think is a Linden. However it has not bloomed in about 20 years. Can you give my a reason? Maybe my tree is not Linden.

  54. Lisa says:

    I LOVE our Linden tree. We bought our first house in Arvada, Colorado in 2002. To this day, one of my favorite aspects of our house is our HUGE Linden that shades more than half of our front yard. The rain rarely makes it through the thick layers of leaves that shade our home. Best tree ever.

  55. Andreas says:

    We have the most wonderful mature Linden trees in flower all over the village right now – their perfume is so strong, it’s totally amazing

  56. Kathleen Pierce says:

    We recently moved to New Hampshire and I think this is what I have been smelling when I walk my dogs. Now I know what to look for!

  57. Cassandra says:

    The fragrance on my morning walk is wonderful. I smell it before I get to it as the morning air sends it out. I pick a couple flowers and sniff as I walk. I was asking the neighbors what kind of tree it is and no one knew….so I decided to look up “trees with fragrance” and came upon this site.
    I’d like it as a perfume. It is captivating.

  58. Peggy Herron says:

    I enjoy telling othe New Yorkers that the delious smell they are enjoying as they walk in our usually not so sweet smelling city ,is the Linden tree .
    A neighbor who is achief , gathers the blossoms and strings them across her kitchen ceiling.
    She will use them in reciepes . Sitting in her kitchen under the not quite dry Linden flowers is a wonderful experience.
    As for myself besides their fragrance I love when the leaves blow and you see the green and silver underside of the leaf.

  59. Lana says:

    Thank you Kevin for the Linden story, and all the commentary-stories. I grew up in Yugoslavia, and most towns I lived in had streets lined with the Lindens. As a child, I ate the back of the flower , sucking the honey along with thousands of bees. My Mom cured all coughs and lung problems with the Linden tea ( my job to pick and dry flowers in the sun). In the winter we baked quinces(male and female), with drizzled Linden honey, to insure no cough could come in. I still get Linden tea, but the freshness and perfume are still part of the long, long ago memory. Your elegant presentation every week on any subject is gratefully received.

  60. Naomi Shelton says:

    I have never smelled the aroma of a Linden tree as far as I know. I wonder if I could get one to grow in central Michigan in zone 5. I know just where I could plant it. Must research.

    Thanks for sharing your love of the Linden. I love trees in general and love to plant them. Alas, I have not much more room on my city lot for planting more trees. Except the spot the Linden could go.

    I love your web-site. You send us the most interesting and useful posts on everything I enjoy. Thanks, Kevin.

  61. george goetz says:

    I have two of these trees and the smell is so refreshing.

  62. Steve Sparkman says:

    How long will it take a linden tree to bloom. I planted a greenspire linden last year and it hasn’t bloomed yet?

  63. Margaret Morris says:

    We just returned from an RV outing at Taidnapam Park on Riffe Lake in Southwest Washington State. There were three trees across the road from us that filled the whole area in the most wonderful sweet scent. I was born and raised in Western Washington and in all of my 66 years I have never seen this tree or smelled this intoxicating fragrance! I took pictures of the leaves and flowers and did an online search for “Trees With Heart Shaped Leaves” and the pictures I found lead me to this site. I’m tickled to have satisfied my curiosity. I didn’t find aphids on the trees, but the trunks were totally covered in little holes from sap suckers. There were many yellow shafted flickers in the area. A GOOD many of the holes were filled with mason bees! With the decline in the honey bee population here in the Northwest, that’s a good thing!

  64. Philippa Drake says:

    I have just returned to New Zealand after a month in Europe where I was completely intoxicated by these beautiful, fragrant trees.I have never seen them here.

  65. Tiffany says:

    I just smelled this for the first time tonight! In Canal Park in Duluth, MN, where I live. Wasn’t sure what it was. Amazing smell! I could’ve kept sniffing the tree but probably would’ve been thought to be crazy! :) Smells kind of like Honeysuckle.

  66. Jeff says:

    Smells like jizz if you ask me…

  67. shama ahmed says:

    I had the privilege to visit the Dordogne in July of last year and saw these beautiful trees in Perigueux. The scent was out of this world! I live in Holland and wonder if the climate and soil would suit this tree.

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  72. Anastasia says:

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    Beautiful fragrant flowers I ever have smelled. Many, many times i go outside to smell flowers. I keep liden tree flowers in bedroom and enjoy 24hrs.

  75. richard says:

    Your website finally afforded me the info as to where the horrible smell in my neighborhood in Brooklyn comes from. I find it very surprising that all of the above comments indicate love of that overpowering smell. Realize that there are many individuals who find that perfumy aroma overpowering

  76. Mickey Mouse says:

    A good part of neighborhood has many of these trees around, some very big. I was riding my bicycle through the streets & it was intoxicatingly delicious, made the early summer a real dream!!
    ♥♥♥LOVE YOU MOTHER NATURE♥♥♥

  77. Dawn says:

    Was walking down a street on Glendale, NY yesterday and these trees lined the streets. The fragrance smells to me a little like honeysuckle or raspberry bush.I found it strong but pleasant.

  78. Kathryn says:

    We had a tree the city planted in front of our house that died. Since our last name means “of the Linden tree” we asked them if they could plant a Linden tree. Thankfully they said yes. Our tree is beautiful! The problem I have is with my husband always wanting to trim it. I cringe every time I see him with the clippers and know what he is up to. He just now trimmed it and I am so sad. He says he needs to be able to mow under there, and I wonder why the tree can’t just stay natural and not be trimmed? We could put rock underneath it or something? I feel for the tree and think that someday it will hate us for all that trimming and just die on us. He should care that his last name means “of the Linden tree” and not “trimmer of the Linden tree!” arggg. Why why why??

  79. Kathleen says:

    I have one of these trees that is about 80 years old here in Upstate NY. It’s blooms are intoxicating in the spring. One question though; about the “seeds” that it drops by the thousands in the summer, my dog (GSD/Dingo mix) LOVES them! and often gets quite “sleepy” after ingesting them. Anyone know of any toxicity of the fruit?

  80. My Mother was introduced to Little Leaf Lindens in lower Wisconsin. In her memory, my wife and I planted a little leaf Linden tree. That was 25 years ago. There had been no blossoms nor perfumes that many of your writers have written about. Two years ago their tiny buds opened for the first time.They produced beautiful white blossoms all over Our Linden Tree along with the most unbeatable aromas and perfumes we had ever enjoyed in our woods. .

    The next description you will probably not believe but it is true! Within 3 to 4 days dozens AND DOZENS AND MORE DOZENS of full grown trees turned out to be LITTLE LEAF LINDENS! We had no inkling of these trees since none of these trees had produced blossoms nor perfumes in the past years.

    We did NOT use any special additions or chemicals to the soil. It had been a dry year but
    but we have wet year and dry years and all kinds of rain years.

    Have any of your staff or subscribers had this happen or heard of it happening?

    Edward Paulson

  81. Hi Edward – What a happy story. (I had to chuckle when you mentioned my “staff” — it’s just me writing this website.) Lindens can take many years to bloom — so glad yours finally did, along with so many other “surprise” trees.

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  84. Yes! We have a good-sized linden (or lime, as Peep #1′s grandmother used to call it) in the front yard. The peep beams with pride when she looks at the tree which she grew from seed.

    Not great for climbin’ (I am a cat)… Actually, who am I kiddin’? Totally useless for climbin’ but the peep says the scent of the flowers is Heavenly.

    Our tree bloomed a bit last year but we all have high hopes that next year, it will do better. Those flowers…. Peep #1 says there is NOTHIN’ like them when it comes to fragrance. Nothin’ this side of Heaven, anyway.

    Purrs,
    Nissy

  85. Izzy says:

    I know this is a very late comment, but I enjoyed your blog entry. We move here two years ago to find the streets in our neighborhood lined with mature Linden trees (I do not know which variety). They were planted when the neighborhood was built 35 years ago.

    The fragrance in early summer is indeed intoxicating. Not a parfum, but rather a spicy sweetness that hangs lightly in the air and makes a person want to spend all day reading in a hammock under the tree. The trees have a handsome, full head, are sturdy and disease-resistant, and the flower bracts stay on all summer, adding to the ornamental value. They have a sturdy branching pattern, so the trees are also interesting in winter.

    Izzy
    Aurora, CO

  86. Sherrie says:

    My sister recently lost her husband, this year, his name was “Linden”.
    He loved to feed the birds and she loves to sip tea, so I thought it would be a great Christmas gift, to plant in honor of him.
    They are very pricey. The cheapest I’ve found is $75.00
    Would anyone be willing to send me one that I could give to her for Christmas?
    Researching best variety for Texas.
    Tilia Tomentosa = Silver Linden, Zones 6-9 and do they smell heavenly, too?
    The other alternative would be to give her seeds.
    Open to any thoughts or comments on best variety to search for.

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