Platanus x hispanica 3 at Grange Gardens

Platanus x hispanica 0

Platanus x hispanica the centre tree (foreground)
early May 2022

Grid reference ST 17984 74930
Common name London plane
Common name Maple-leaved plane
Alternative name Platanus x acerifolia
Alternative name Platanus x hybrida
Origin Garden origin
Deciduous Yes
Height 24M May 2022
Girth 380cm May 2022

This tree is near the north east entrance and is shown as number 3 in the map on the Grange Gardens history page.

The approximate age of this tree is calculated by estimating its lifetime growing conditions and measuring its girth.[1]

The formula for estimating the age of Platanus x hispanica caters for "ideal" "good" and "average" sites. The age calculation has been made on the basis that this ground is between "average" and "good".

Doing the calculation on the basis of this being an average site, the tree is estimated to be approximately 140 years old in 2022, and therefore started growing around 1882. If it were considered a good site it is estimated to be approximately 115 years old in 2022, and therefore started growing around 1906.

General tree description

Platanus x hispanica can grow to 35 metres or more and live for several hundred years. Its bark is olive green to grey, with large scaly plates that peel off to reveal a creamy bark underneath. The leaves are maple-like, thick and leathery, up to 20 cm long and wide, with five triangular lobes. They turn a rich orange-yellow before falling in autumn. Bauble-like fruits hang in clusters from early summer to the following spring. The origin of Platanus x hispanica is not certain. It is thought to be a hybrid of the oriental plane and the American plane, and was brought to Britain from Spain in the 17th century. The earliest specimens in London are believed to be those in Berkeley Square planted in 1789.

Sources of Information

  1. Estimating the Age of Large and Veteran Trees in Britain