Linden: planting, caring for, pruning and harvesting

It is very tempting to welcome a lime tree in your garden. This beautiful tree that can live up to 400 years belongs to the family of Malvaceae and kind Tilia, the latter comprising about a hundred species to which are added many cultivars and hybrids. This tree grows quite quickly and it is ideal for creating a shaded area of ​​the most beautiful effect where we take pleasure in relaxing throughout the summer, especially in summer we enjoy the exquisite delicately honeyed scent of its flowers in abundance. Depending on the species, it can reach 35 meters in height. Typically, a lime tree is easy to live so that its culture does not present any particular difficulty. Let’s take stock of the few care that this alignment tree needs or to plant in isolation.

Plant a lime tree

To allow a lime tree to take root well at the onset of winter, it is necessary to plant it in the fall, although it is possible to plant it until early spring. But whatever the moment chosen, it is absolutely necessary to avoid periods of frost, which is the rule to apply for all trees.

The planting a lime tree proceed as follows.

  • Dig a large hole, 60 to 70 cm deep and 100 cm wide.
  • Place a layer of compost at the bottom.
  • Install the young lime tree in the center of the planting hole, taking care to make the collar coincide with the level of the ground because it must absolutely not be buried.
  • Put a solid stake whose height is equal to 30% of that of the tree.
  • Fill the hole with good, non-acidic garden soil mixed with potting soil.
  • Firm and form a bowl around the foot.
  • Water abundantly.

If we wish plant several lime trees, it is necessary to remember to respect a distance of at least 12 meters between two subjects with great development and of 6 meters for species of smaller size. For a row planting of large lime trees, it is recommended to separate them from each other by about 6 meters.

Growing a lime tree

Basswood must be installed in the sun or in partial shade, sheltered from dry and hot winds. He likes them humus enriched soils, limestones, costs, well drained, even stony or clayey, but risk of suffering if planted in acidic soil. It is rustic, so that it tolerates without flinching down to -20 to -23 ° C.

The Linden is a fast growing tree which is suitable in a sufficiently spacious garden, especially if one sets his sights on a species with great development which will take up a lot of space in adulthood. It is therefore important to choose your location wisely at the time of planting. It should not be installed too close to the house. A distance of the order of 18 to 20 meters between this tree and a construction is therefore necessary, especially as its branched roots are dense.

Caring for a lime tree

Its culture may be suitable for a novice gardener because the lime tree does not have great needs.


It is especially during the two or three years which follow its plantation that the waterings must be frequent and generous, particularly in case of drought or hot weather. Depending on climatic conditions, a lime tree can receive approximately 25 to 50 liters of water every 6 or 7 days.


To maintain a certain freshness, it is very useful to lay down a mulch at the foot, and particularly in summer.


It is important to stake a lime tree when planting. This guardian can be removed after 3 years.


Each year, while it is still young, the lime tree needs a supply of compost in autumn and spring.


It is not not mandatory to prune a lime tree. We can very well choose to let it develop without limit if we have a large park. But if we judge that it becomes a little too bulky, we can perfectly cast offeven severely.

Perform a more moderate size is enough to intervene on its architecture by directing just a few branches. The best time to prune a lime tree is at the end of winter, outside the frost period, and just before bud formation.

Do not hesitate to remove the many rejections that form on the base of the tree.

Parasites and diseases

The lime tree is well known for its great resistance. It can still be the target of parasites such as various species of aphids that attack the leaves. These become sticky. A treatment with black soap is necessary. We can also fear the mealybug (Pulvinaria hydrangeae) with a brownish shell responsible for sooty mold. Affected parts should be deleted. The lime tree is sometimes the target of defoliating caterpillars, particularly devastating on young specimens. It is necessary to destroy their nests by taking care to wear a mask and gloves, then apply a treatment of the pyrethrum decoction type.

THE’anthrachnosis is a disease that causes leaf necrosis. No treatment is available to eradicate it. It is therefore necessary to generously prune the affected branches and then burn them.

Harvest linden leaves and flowers

It is at the very beginning of thesummer that we harvest the linden flowers. But it can be a bit out of step depending on the region. We choose the moment when the flowers are barely open. The harvest lasts very little time, about three days. It consists of take the inflorescences. The flowers are therefore picked as well as their bracts, that is to say the floral parts in the form of colored leaves which are associated with them.

Then you have to spread them out on a clean cloth for dry them in a bright and airy room for a few days. They must remain flexible, so do not prolong the drying time excessively.

All that remains is to place them delicately in a large paper bag or in a basket with a lid in order to keep them away from light and so that they do not collect dust. We can then prepare delicious lime blossom infusions added, why not, of a teaspoon of honey. Three bracts are enough to deliciously flavor a cup of simmering water.