Silver Linden (Tilia tomentosa)
The Silver Linden, named for the silvery underside of its leaves, has a broad pyramidal or rounded habit. The species name tomentosa refers to the "tomentose," or tiny, densely matted hairs under the leaves that give them the silvery hue. It is often grown as a multi-stemmed tree. This is a very vigorous growing tree with a very neat and symmetrical shape. It grows 45 to 60 feet tall and spreads 25 to 45 feet. The last Linden to flower, this species bears small, fragrant flowers in the summer. This tree produces dense foliage, so much so that few other plants will grow beneath its branches. The glossy green leaves have fuzzy, silvery undersides. The bark initially is gray and smooth, later becoming gray-brown and furrowed. These leaves make it resistant to Japanese beetle feeding. This tree tolerates heat, drought, and pollution better than other Lindens.
Silver Linden Choices
PNI 6051 (Green Mountain TM) is a rapid growing cultivar that withstands heat and drought. Princeton is a pyramidal form becoming more oval with age. Sashazam (Satin Shadow, TM) is a broadly pyramidal tree reaching a height of 50 feet and a spread of 40 feet. Sterling is a broadly pyramidal tree reaching a height of 45 feet and a spread of 35 feet . The variety ‘Sterling’ is a favorite tree of many municipal arborists. (Zones 4-7) Drought-tolerant and pH-adaptable, this species makes an excellent specimen plant on a variety of sites. Although the tree is pollution tolerant, the pubescent underside of the leaves are known to collect solid air pollutants that can turn them brown by midsummer. On the other hand, this cultivar is particularly resistant to Japanese beetle and gypsy moth attack. Green Mountain is similar to ‘Sterling’