Includes trees with small leaves e.g. birch and larger ones such as Hazel and Lime.
Leaves (shown below): small 5-7 cm long, double toothed and triangular, tapering to a point 2-3 cm broad.
•branches – sharply angled upwards. curve down a bit at ends, unlike hairy birch
and the bark of the trunk has horizontal cuts
•A “pioneer” (i.e. first to grow in new open area). Quick growing.
•Live for 60-80 years whereas oak trees live for hundreds of years
Male catkin (flower) on birch tree, appearing early (i.e. in autumn)
Silver birch – trunk
Adult birch shield bug on leaf of silver birch (autumn)
Late instar (larval form) of birch shield bug (autumn)
The leaf is large – up to 10 cm long with a tapering point at the top (like that of a hazel – though lime has a single trunk and “epicormic” growth of stems i.e. growing directly from trunk all the way up)
•little tufts of hairs in the axils of the veins
•leaf veins approx symmetrical (unlike hazel leaf veins which are staggered)
•leaf shape has similarities to hazel BUT shape of the common lime leaf is asymmetric with one side of leaf shorter than the other at the base
•Brought in from Europe hundreds of years ago
Fruits of common lime tree (in autumn)
•several narrow trunks like a bush (like elder – both are technically shrubs; dogwood is also bush-like)
•bigger leaf. broad and roundish, double-toothed and, when grown, end in a little short tip. 6-13 cm long. Stalk has fine hairs. 5-15mm (see photograph)
•compare with lime (and possibly grey alder) which have similar (though asymmetric) leaves but with a single trunk