Small-leaved Lime

Tilia cordata

  1. Wildlife
  2. Trees and shrubs
  3. Small-leaved Lime


The Small-leaved Lime is a large tree of ancient woodland, particularly across southern England and the Midlands where it is locally distributed but abundant. Its sweet-smelling summer flowers attract a huge number of insects looking for nectar. It produces large, winged seeds which are dispersed by the wind.

How to identify

The three limes are very similar and often difficult to tell apart. The Small-leaved Lime has heart-shaped leaves which are smaller than those of the other two limes and have patches of tiny, rusty-orange hairs by the veins on the underside.

Where to find it

Widespread in England and Wales.


When to find it

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December

How can people help

Our native tree species, such as the Small-leaved Lime, provide important links in the food chain for many animals, as well as areas for shelter and nesting. The Wildlife Trusts recognise the importance of healthy habitats to support all kinds of species throughout the food chain, so look after many nature reserves for the benefit of wildlife. You can help too: volunteer for your local Wildlife Trust and you could be involved in everything from coppicing to craft-making, stockwatching to surveying.

Species information

Common name
Small-leaved Lime
Latin name
Tilia cordata
Trees and shrubs
Height: up to 25m
Conservation status