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Celtis caucasica Willd.

Modern name

Celtis australis subsp. caucasica (Willd.) C.C.Towns.

A medium-sized tree with a greyish trunk and limbs, and a bushy head of branches; young shoots downy. Leaves obliquely ovate or ovate-lanceolate, slenderly (often rather abruptly) pointed, coarsely toothed; 212 to 4 in. long, broadly wedge-shaped at the base; upper surface covered when young with short, bristle-like hairs which mostly fall away, leaving it slightly rough; lower surface covered at first with softer down, most of which also falls away except on the midrib and veins; stalk downy, 14 to 12 in. long. Fruit 13 in. diameter, yellow, borne on a slender stalk about 1 in. long.

Native of Afghanistan, N. India, Caucasus, etc.; raised at Kew from seed sent from Afghanistan by Dr Aitchison when he was attached to the Delimit­ation Commission (1884-5). It is very closely allied to C. australis, but is evidently a much hardier tree, and far better adapted for cultivation in the south of England. It differs from that species in its comparatively shorter, broader leaves with less drawn-out points, less downy, and usually more coarsely toothed.

From the Supplement (Vol. V)

The two examples at Kew now measure 33 × 5 ft and 41 × 414 ft (1981).



Other species in the genus