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Downy Basswood Tree

Downy Basswood TreeThe Downy Basswood (T. pubescens, Ait.), like the Northern species, has leaves that are green on both sides, but this species is distinguished by the rusty hairs that line its leaves and coat its young shoots.

It is a small tree, with leaves, flowers and fruits reduced in size. It is a basswood in every character, and need not be confused with the other native species. Its flower blade is rounded at its base, while the others taper narrowly to the short stem.

This little basswood follows the coast from the Carolinas to Texas. It occurs also in Long Island. It is too rare to have any importance as a lumber tree, and it is not a desirable species for cultivation.

A large tree, with pubescent leaf linings and flower stalks, has been discovered growing in various localities from Montreal to Georgia and Texas.

Collectors have assigned it to Tilia pubescens, because it is a hairy species. It does not fit the de-scription, having larger features throughout, and the seed bract being narrowly obovate, tapering to the base. These may be, merely variations from the type species. Professor Sargent accepts Nuttall's name, Tilia Michauxii, in his Manual. The tree is little known as yet.