“Her hair was long, her limbs were white,
And fair she was and free;
And in the wind she went as light
As leaf of linden-tree.” –J.R.R. Tolkien
I’ve always had a fondness for Linden trees. Overseas, they are also popularly called “lime trees,” although they have nothing to do with the citrus fruit. I prefer calling them “Linden trees” because some say that is where my name, Lindsay, comes from (not at all self-centered of me).
Tilia europaea is a fairly common tree, often found lining parks and avenues. It has clusters of small white flowers that smell sweet and fresh when in bloom. It is an unusual-looking tree in that its flowers spring directly from a specialized leaf called a “subtending bract.” These leaves look entirely different from the main leaves of the tree. Here, I will show you:
See how the stem of the flowers is attached to the…
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