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Sorbus aria - Whitebeam

Sorbus aria Lutescens is a variety of the common Whitebeam, a small-medium sized tree native to Britain and Europe.

This is a very popular tree as it has few demands and can tolerate wind, heat, dry soils and alkaline. It requires little maintenance and this, combined with its uniform conical crown, make it an excellent suggestion for urban planting as well as park and garden settings. Sorbus aria Lutescens grows best on lime rich soils, and will thrive on chalk.

When the foliage emerges in spring, it is silvery with both sides of the leaves covered in small downy hairs and has a very striking presence. As it moves into summer, the elliptical leaves shed the hairs on the upper surface but maintainthe silver-white underside.

Clusters of scented white flowers are produced in May, followed by bunches of orange-red fruits, popular with the birds. The Autumn colour is yellow-brown and the leaves tend to be among the first to fall.

FACT: This variety of Sorbus aria was introduced to Britain by a French nursery in the mid 19th century.

Plant Profile

Height: approximately 10-12m

Demands: Tolerant of a range of conditions. Thrives on well drained chalk soils

Foliage: Elliptical, covered in fine silver hairs

Flower: Clusters of small white flowers in May

Fruit: Orange-red berries follow the flowers, ripening in autumn. Popular with wildlife

Sorbus aria Lutescens info sheet

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