Tilia japonica
Common Name: Japanese linden 
Type: Tree
Family: Malvaceae
Native Range: Japan
Zone: 6 to 8
Height: 50.00 to 65.00 feet
Spread: 35.00 to 50.00 feet
Bloom Time: June
Bloom Description: Pale yellow
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Shade Tree, Street Tree
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Fruit: Showy
Tolerate: Drought


Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. Prefers moist, fertile, well-drained loams, but adapts to a wide range of soil conditions. Good tolerance for urban conditions.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Tilia japonica, commonly called Japanese linden, is native to Japan and China. It is a medium sized shade tree that typically grows to 50-65' tall. It is similar in appearance to Tilia cordata except it usually grows somewhat shorter. Abruptly acuminate, almost orbicular, light blue-green leaves (to 3 1/4" long) have sharply serrulate margins, cordate bases and generally glaucous undersides. Young leaves have some pubescence on leaf veins underneath. Fragrant, pale yellow flowers in 7-40 flowered pendulous cymes bloom in late spring to early summer (June). Flowers give way to ellipsoid, thin-shelled nutlets that ripen in late summer. Nutlets are attached to narrow bract-like wings. Fall color is an undistinguished pale green to pale yellow. Japanese linden is synonymous with and formerly known as Tilia cordata var. japonica.

Genus name comes from the Latin name for the linden or lime tree, known in southern Sweden as linn and the origin of the name Linnaeus.

Specific epithet means of Japan.


No serious insect or disease problems. Verticillium wilt is infrequent, but can be fatal. Powdery mildew, leaf spots and canker may occur. Insect visitors include borers, scale, leaf miner, lace bugs, caterpillars, aphids and Japanese beetles. Spider mites can be troublesome, particularly in hot, dry periods.


This tree is not widely planted in the U. S. Shade tree, lawn tree or street tree. Good specimen.